The Abuja School of Social and Political Thought (ASSPT) has filed a suit against the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) over its alleged delay in regulating campaign finance.
The suit, marked FHC/ABUCS/2037/2022, dated October 26 and filed on November 4, 2022, was filed by ASSPT, a civil society organisation (CSO), through its lawyer, Sam Amadi, who doubles as the school’s director.
Among other things, the suit seeks a declaration of the court that INEC has a duty under the constitution and the electoral law to demand published financial statements of the finances of political parties, including a comprehensive report of all the monies raised by candidates and their parties.
The ASSPT is also praying the court for an order of mandamus directing the electoral commission to issue regulatory framework, guidelines, and dates for the parties and candidates on how to submit comprehensive records of all monies contributed from inside and outside Nigeria, and the expenditure they have incurred towards the 2023 general election.
Speaking on the suit, Amadi said the purpose is to ensure that a key element of free and fair election under the constitution and electoral law, which is campaign finance, is firmly and fairly regulated.
CSO Sues INEC Over Refusal To Regulate Campaign Finance
“Without an effective regulation of campaign finance, we cannot have good, accountable, and responsive governance post-election,” he said.
“Except we have effective control of campaign reform, we cannot secure for ourselves, politics that produces economic and social wellbeing for Nigerians.
“Presently, the INEC has failed to carry out its statutory duties. It has not provided any regulatory framework to control the use of illicit money and the commercialisation of political process.
“If nothing is done to force INEC to perform its constitutional duties, the integrity of the 2023 general election and the prospect of democratic consolidation in Nigeria will be threatened.
“We need the court to force INEC to comply with the constitution and fulfil its obligations.”