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Group Asks US, UK To Stop Buhari From Destroying Nigerian Democracy With His Parochial Appoint Of Onochie As INEC Commissioner

A pro-democracy group, Concerned Nigerians, has asked the United States, United Kingdom, and other development partners not to allow President Muhammadu Buhari to destroy the nation’s democracy and the INEC’s independence with his parochial appointment of his social media aide, Lauretta Onochie, as an Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) commissioner.

The group made the call in a letter to the US and UK Missions dated October 14, 2020, signed by Deji Adeyanju.

Concerned Nigerians described Onochie’s appointment as unconstitutional, and unacceptable to the generality of the Nigerian people.

They said Onochie is “an openly partisan, card-carrying member of the All Progressives Congress, Nigeria’s ruling party, who constantly attacks and denigrates critics of the ruling party.”

The constitution prohibits a card-carrying member of a registered political party or a well-known supporter of a particular political party from being appointed as a member of the INEC, the group said.

The letter read in part, “President Muhammadu Buhari’s appointment of his Assistant on Social Media, Lauretta Onochie, as INEC Commissioner from Delta State is a reprehensible attempt to destroy the integrity and independence of Nigeria’s electoral commission.

“Lauretta Onochie is an openly partisan, card-carrying member of the All Progressives Congress, Nigeria’s ruling party, who constantly attacks and denigrates critics of the ruling party.

“Her appointment is in violation of Paragraph 14 of Part 1 of the Third Schedule to the Constitution as amended by Section 30, Act No 1 of 2010, which stipulates that a member of the Independent National Electoral Commission shall be non-partisan.

“We appeal to you to pressure President Buhari to rescind this appoint as it is capable of reversing the gains made in our electoral processes.”

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