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We won’t tolerate vote buying in 2019 – INEC chair

The chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu, says that the electoral body will no longer tolerate vote buying on election day.

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Professor Yakubu said this on Thursday in Abuja when he received the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, at the commission’s headquarters in Abuja.

“I want to assure Nigerians that INEC shall remain an unbiased umpire. We are here to work for Nigerian people and on election date, the votes they cast will determine who wins.
“INEC is worried that politicians go to polling booth to induce voters. Our democracy shouldn’t be for sale in the open market. Open votes buying will not be tolerated on election day. Votes aren’t for
sale. It is the right of Nigerians to vote for whoever and that will be upheld by INEC,” the INEC chairman also said.

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Professor Yakubu, who warned the politicians against vote buying, also berated the political parties for not adhering to the rule on election campaigns expenses.  

He solicited the support of the EFCC to stop vote buying and non-adherence to rules on election campaigns expenses by political parties.

He reiterated that the electoral body would not condone corruption within its rank, recalling that over 200 of its staff were indicted during the 2015 general elections.
“I insist that our democracy should never be for sale because once we get our democracy right, we are on the right way to fight all our socio-economic
problems,” said Professor Yakubu.
The EFCC chairman, in his remarks, said the anti-graft agency would collaborate with the INEC.

“I am prepared to collaborate and support whenever our services are needed. We are ready to support INEC. We are all Nigerians and all of us need to collaborate to fight corruption. It is affecting all of
us. People have to run out of this country to escape the evil of corruption.

“Corruption is disaster. It has done too much damage to this country. INEC is also fighting corruption, maybe not in the way I am doing it.
“When you tell Nigerians to register and vote, it is a way of fighting corruption,” Magu said.

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