The Independent National Electoral Commission, on Thursday, stated that it has filed a six-count charge against the suspended Resident Electoral Commissioner of the INEC in Adamawa State, Hudu Yunusa-Ari.
The Commission made this known in a statement issued on Thursday, July 6, 2023.
According to the Commission, the action was taken after reviewing the case file from the police which established a prima facie case against Yunusa-Ari.
Yunusa-Asri had earlier been arrested by the Police Command in Adamawa State, over his actions during the State governorship election.
However, he was granted administrative bail and then asked to report to the headquarters of the NPF every weekday.
Premium Politics had reported that the INEC REC, hurriedly declared the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Aishatu Dahiru Binani as the winner of the state governorship election, while the counting was ongoing, and the action made the INEC suspend the process and invited him to the Commission’s headquarters in Abuja, and subsequently suspended him.
Meanwhile, many people have continued to press for his prosecution after the incident.
However, the Commission had alerted the general public that it has filed the 16-counts charges against him at the high court in Yola, the state capital.
Festus Okoye, the National Commissioner and Chairman of the Information and Voter Education Committee of the Independent National Electoral Commission wrote: ”Prosecution of Resident Electoral Commissioner, Barr. Hudu Yunusa Ari” reads: “The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) held its regular weekly meeting today, Thursday 6th July 2023, and discussed, among other issues, the progress with the prosecution of electoral offenders.
“It would be recalled that at the meeting with the Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) two days ago on Tuesday 4th July 2023, the Commission confirmed the receipt of case files from the Nigeria Police following the conclusion of an investigation into alleged electoral offences during the 2023 General Election, including the one involving the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) deployed to Adamawa State, Barr. Hudu Yunusa Ari.
“The Commission also assured Nigerians of immediate action on the matter.
“As provided by Section 145(1) of the Electoral Act 2022, an offence committed under the Act shall be triable in a Magistrate Court or a High Court of a State in which the offence is committed, or the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
“Furthermore, Section 145(2) of the Act provides that a prosecution under the Act shall be undertaken by legal officers of the Commission or any legal practitioner appointed by it.
“Having reviewed the case file from the Police which established a prima facie case against Barr. Hudu Yunusa Ari, the Commission has filed a six-count charge against him at the Adamawa State High Court sitting in Yola. Consequently, the Court has fixed Wednesday 12th July 2023 for the commencement of trial.
“Meanwhile, the Commission is working with the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) for the diligent prosecution of other cases”.