A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) has urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to prosecute electoral offenders no matter their status.
Mr Dafe Akpedeye believes there will always be electoral malpractices until people are brought to book.
He stated that the Nigerian Bar Association has over time tried to work with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) but could not work as planned because of INEC’s involvement with elections.
He noted that some issues like double registration can easily be managed and the perpetrators can be brought to book.
Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily, Mr. Akpedeye maintained that there should not be sentiments in judging issues.
“If you get the big fish that commits these offences and punish them as scape goat, it will prevent a lot of these people from committing these offences,” he said.
He noted that paying of fine will not stop the damage done through electoral malpractices, “Until you deprive people who have the ability to pay fines of the liability, they will keep committing same crimes”.
Mr. Akpedeye also threw his weight behind the use of card readers during elections, referring to it as a major determinant for double registration and voting.
He expressed optimism that as the nation progresses, things would get better, but emphasized the need for INEC to use a “big person” as scape goat to sanitize the electoral process.