The Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, Hon Ndudi Elumelu, has called for faster democratic procedures for the removal of office holders who manifest incompetence or abuses in the delivery of the mandate vested on their offices.
Elumelu made the call while delivering a public lecture at the weekend during the 5th biennial convention of the class of 84 of his school, St. Pius Grammar School, Onicha Ugbo in Delta State.
Speaking on the topic: ‘The Role of Enhance Electoral Awareness in Improving the Quality of Leadership In Nigeria’, Elumelu said the desired quality of leadership can only be achieved if the electorate are adequately enlightened and mobilised to make informed choices relating to the electoral worthiness of candidates at elections
The minority leader in a statement issued yesterday lamented that Nigerians are being short-changed by incompetent, corrupt, and selfish leadership in various sectors of the national life.
Elumelu recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari was reelected in 2019 with 15.2 million votes representing about 18 percent of the 84 million registered voters; 13.2 percent of the estimated 115 million voting age population and about 7.6 percent of the total population of the country by 2019.
He said such indices couldn’t have represented the desired preference of 200.9 million people, and cannot guarantee the shared pursuit of the collective aspiration of such a population of people.
The lawmaker said: “Statutory provisions for impeachments and recalls of elected office holders should be made more democratic and enforceable as a way to make elected leaders more answerable to the people.
“Provisions should be added in the constitution to empower the people, through the elected representatives in the legislature, to enforce the removal of ministers, commissioners and other executive appointees with established cases of incompetence or gross misconduct.”
Elumelu also called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to make the electoral procedures less cumbersome, while also recommending stiffer punishments for INEC officials, politicians and political parties found culpable for electoral offences.
According to him, “There should be a provision which makes a returning officer culpable of electoral offence in a case where an election is annulled by a court on allegations of electoral violations. Such provision would deter electoral officers from being used to manipulate elections.”