Visa Ban/International Travel Restrictions: Intersociety Drags Forty-Four Top INEC Officials And Four Conspiratorial Govs To US, EU, UK, France, Germany And 26 Others Over Voter Suppression And INEC In-House Poll Rigging And Gross Rights Abuses
Onitsha, Eastern Nigeria
Thursday, 2nd March 2023
The International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law (Intersociety), Nigeria’s leading independent research and investigative, democracy, human rights, rule of law and public security and safety advocacy/not-for-profit Organization has responded swiftly to the armada of electoral fraud that characterized the 25th Feb 2023 Presidential Poll by identifying, naming and dragging forty-four top INEC officials that vicariously or directly involved in the INEC in-house brutal rigging of the 2023 Presidential Poll to 31 key foreign missions in Nigeria, representing the world’s best and most powerful Democracies. Also dragged to the 31 globally respected Democracies are four conspiratorial Govs in Nigeria. The 31 international Democracies written to include: the Head of the EU Delegation to Nigeria/ECOWAS and Ambassadors or High Commissioners of US, UK, Canada, France, Germany, State of Israel, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium, Denmark, Scotland, Ireland, Spain, Czech, Portugal, Norway, Finland, Austria, Netherlands, Sweden, Poland, Greece, Hungary, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Australia, the Vatican, South Korea, Brazil and Mexico. The letter was dated Wednesday, 1st March 2023.
Those petitioned against for their vicarious or direct liability are Prof Mahmood Yakubu, INEC’s National Chairman and the following fourteen serving or immediate past National Commissioners of the Commission-with their States of origin: Retired Air Vice Marshal Ahmed Mua’zu (Gombe), Mrs. May Agbamuche-Mbu (Delta), Dr. Adekunle Ladipo Ogunmola (Oyo), Mallam Mohammed Kudu Haruna (Kano), Ukegbu Nnamdi (Abia), Retired Major Gen Abubakar Alkali (Adamawa), Rhoda Gumus (Bayelsa), Sam Olumekun (Ondo), Barr Festus Okoye (Anambra), Kunle Ajayi (Ekiti), Muhammad Kallah (Borno), Dr. Baba Bila (North-East), Prof Sani Adam (North-Central) and Prof Abdullahi Abdu (North-West). The 31 respected international Democracies called upon, were humbly requested to slam visa ban and other inter-country entry restrictions and block international engagements and recognitions in their names particularly those involving the National Chairman of INEC (Prof Mahmood Yakubu), the National Commissioner for Voter Education who doubles as National Commissioner for Anambra, Imo and Enugu (Festus Okoye Esquire). The letter seminally and conscientiously raised against them was for their vicarious or direct involvement in widespread voter suppression and brutal subversion of the sacred electoral wishes of Nigerians during the INEC in-house brutally rigged Feb 25, 2023 Presidential Election.
Named, too, in the letter are 37 serving or immediate past 37 State Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) with their States of origin: Ibrahim Abdullahi (Adamawa State), Obo Effanga (Cross Rivers), Agboke Olaleke (Ogun), Prof Sam Egwu (Kogi), Onyeka Ugochi (Imo), Muhammad Bashir (Sokoto), Prof Ayobami Salami (Oyo), Olaniyi Ijalaye (Ondo), Muhammed Nura (Yobe), Zango Abdu (Katsina), Dr. Elizabeth Agwu (Ebonyi), Agundu Tarsoo (Benue), Yomere Onitsemlebi (Delta), Prof Yahaya Ibrahim (Kaduna), Nura Ali (Kano), Agu Uchenna (Enugu), Ahmed Garki (FCT), Hudu Yunusa (Bauchi), Prof Uzochukwu Chijoke (Anambra), Abdulganiyu Raji (Oyo), Risikuwa Shehu (Sokoto), Bello Mahmud (Zamfara), Nentawe Yilwada (Plateau),Umar Ibrahim (Taraba), Mustapha Zubairu (Niger), Asmau Maikudi (Katsina), James Apam (Benue), Godswill Obioma (Abia), Olusegun Agbaje (Lagos), Dr. Cyril Omorogbe (Edo State), Baba Yusuf (Borno), Dr. Uthman Ajidagba (Kwara), Yahaya Bello (Nasarawa), Dr Emmanuel Hart (Rivers), Mohammed Ibrahim (Gombe), Mahmuda Isah (Kebbi) and Dr. Adediran Rahmon Tella (Osun). Two key Directors of INEC: Engineer Paul Omokere (Director of ICT) and Dr. Lawrence Bayode (Deputy Director of ICT) are among those blacklisted and petitioned against.
The vicariously or directly culpable four Governors petitioned against for their conspiratorial roles in the brutal voter suppression and INEC in-house presidential poll rigging are Govs Nyesom Nwike of Rivers State, Nasiru El-Rufai of Kaduna State, Hope Uzodinma of Imo State and Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State. While three of them (Wike, El-Rufai and Umahi) will lose their office immunities in less than three months (29th May 2023), that of Imo State will be facing a crucial governorship poll in Sept 2023 or less than seven months away and runs high risk of losing his office immunity by 20th Jan 2024 if he loses the poll. They were also petitioned against and sought to be slammed with visa ban and inter-country entry restrictions involving themselves and members of their nuclear families for their vicarious or direct involvement in gross human rights abuses and violations under their gubernatorial watch in Imo, Rivers, Kaduna and Ebonyi between 2015 and 2020 and 2021 and 2023.
We had prayerfully called on the 31 respected Ambassadors or High Commissioners to:
1. Slam visa sanctions and other international travel, engagement and recognition restrictions on the serving Gov of Imo State and office immunity losing (outgoing) Govs of Rivers, Kaduna and Ebonyi States. Included in the list is Gov Yahaya Bello of Kogi State who will also be losing office immunity on 29th May 2023
2. Repatriate all their stashed away material and human deposits and monetary valuable services (if any) traced and linked to the 44 top INEC officials and strongly suspected office atrocity perpetrator Govs named
3. Ensure that all members of their nuclear families living or holidaying or studying anywhere in the named respected countries and their assets and liabilities are speedily repatriated back to Nigeria and permanently embargoed from finding their way back to the respected countries.
4. Particularly, Prof Mahmood Yakubu and Festus Okoye Esquire should be stripped of international forums and opportunities to speak emptily and noisily and stop from receiving undue international attentions and recognitions and permanently barred from traveling to any of the 31 respected Democratic countries named including their nuclear family members.
5. Holistically review future funding and international democracy support funds to INEC and its rubberstamping CSOs including scholarships and sponsorship of their international visitations and exchange programs and speech deliveries.
6. Downward review of funding of Election Day monitoring and upward review of supporting independent CSOs’ critical oversight on INEC especially during Continuous Voters’ Registration and Distribution of Permanent Voters’ Cards to discourage disenfranchisement and enhance enfranchisement
7. Mount sufficient pressure and tying future democracy support funding to INEC on full digitalization of voting process or dualization of voting in the country or any part thereof to include electronic PVC and manual PVC voting; whereby registered voters can vote from their homes or choose to vote physically at polling units with their votes count.
Note: A 3-Page Supporting Statistics Was Also Attached To Back Up The Letter.
For: International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law (Intersociety)
Emeka Umeagbalasi (Crimonologist)
Board Chair, Intersociety
Chinwe Umeche Esquire
Head, Democracy and Good Governance
Chidinma Udegbunam Esquire
Head, Campaign and Publicity
Obianuju Joy Igboeli Esquire
Head, Civil Liberties and Rule of Law
Head, Contacts and Mobilization