Lawyer counsels INEC to enforce constitutional provisions for political office seekers

Prof. Wahab Egebwole (SAN) of the University of Ilorin (Unilorin) has advised the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to enforce the basic constitutional educational qualification prescribed for all political office seekers.

Egbewole gave the advice on Thursday in Ilorin during an interview with newsmen on the sidelines of a two-day Annual Press Week of the Correspondents Chapel of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Kwara State Chapter.

The programme is themed: “The Media for Credible Democracy”.

Egbewole, who teaches in the Faculty of Law of Unilorin, said that INEC can deal with the issue of certificate saga to sanitise the electoral process.

He asserted that the constitution clearly prescribed the qualifications of the person seeking office as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, including citizenship of Nigeria up to school leaving certificate level.

“The person must not be a member of any cult group. At every election circle, we see this issue of certificate saga.

“Ironically, as far as we are concerned, the two major parties presidential candidates are troubled over education qualification.

“The qualification within the constitutional regime is clear. INEC has the role to play to ensure that basic educational qualification prescribed by the constitution is fulfilled,” he said.

Egbewole also pointed out that the political space has been individualised because of the provisions of the 2022 Electoral Act that “gives you and I, as citizens opportunity to challenge any false claim by any seeker of office”.

On the role of the media in the 2023 general elections, the expert reminded the media to be equity driven and shun the adage of “he who pays the piper, dictates the tune”.