By Francis Sardauna
The Katsina State chapter of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) has called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to arrest and prosecute the state governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr. Dikko Umar Radda, for flouting the Electoral Act.
The party alleged that the APC gubernatorial candidate has begun his electioneering in Baure, Zango and Sandamu Local Governments of the state against the commission’s timetable and schedule of activities for the 2023 general election.
In a petition signed by its chairman, Hon. Sani Liti, and addressed to INEC, the party said the action of Radda and his supporters contravened section 28 (1) of the 2022 amended Electoral Act.
The petition letter read in part; “We write to notify you of the violation of the relevant section of the electoral law and pray that the violators shall be punished according to the provision of the law.
“We invite the honourable commissioner to recall that the relevant section of the law provides for the commencement of campaigns and a timetable for the campaigns signed by Rose Oriaran-Anthony on 26th February 2022 was issued.
“According to the timetable, the campaign starts as follows: Presidential and National Assembly, September 28, 2023 and Gubernatorial and State Assembly, October 12, 2022
“However, we have noted with dismay that the APC candidate, Umar Dikko Radda, has commenced his campaigns in Baure, Zango and Sandamu Local Governments in total disregard for the provision of the law.
“Consequently, we are praying that the commission shall: Bring to the notice of the political actors of the state to follow the provision of the law as violating the law shall be stopped,
arrest and rosecute the violators of the law led by Dikko Umar Radda, the gubernatorial candidate of the APC.”
But the chairman of Radda’s media organisation, Ahmed Abdulkadir, denied claims by the NNPP that the APC governorship candidate had commenced campaigns.
Abdulkadir, in a statement Thursday, said as an enlightened and educated person, Radda is not ignorant of the electoral law to fall into that kind of breach either wittingly or unwittingly.
“Dr. Dikko Radda has not started his gubernatorial campaign. What he did were meetings with party officials, no more, no less. In addition, the party, APC, had written to all security agencies and copied INEC, with the full itinerary on the said meetings with party excos at all levels,” he added.