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Melaye Failed recall of Senator cost INEC N100m, not N100bn - Yakubu

The INEC boss dismissed claims that the sum of N100 billion was spent on the exercise.

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Senator Dino Melaye has apologised to Nigerians for promoting President Buhari in 2015. play

Senator Dino Melaye

(Instagram/@dinomelaye)

The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, has revealed that the failed exercise to recall Kogi lawmaker, Senator Dino Melaye, cost the commission N100 million.

During a press conference in Abuja on Friday, May 4, 2018, the INEC boss dismissed claims that the sum of N100 billion was spent on the exercise that concluded last week.

He said,"A recall exercise is just like conducting a Senatorial election. The Kogi-West which Melaye represents has 552 polling units and seven local governments."

Melaye's failed recall

In June 2017, a total of 188,580 electorates in Melaye's constituency had signed a register to recall him from the National Assembly for a series of misconducts. INEC took delivery of the recall register on June 21, 2017.

After Melaye lost an application in an Abuja division of the Federal High Court to declare the petition submitted to INEC as illegal and unconstitutional, he refused to take receipt of the petition, as required by law.

When INEC filed an application in court to allow it serve the recall petition on Melaye through substituted means rather than personal service, the court had to suspend the hearing because Melaye had filed for an appeal to the initial judgement.

On March 16, 2018, the Court of Appeal panel made a unanimous decision to strike out Melaye's application to stop INEC from completing the process.

INEC conducted the verification exercise on Saturday, April 28, but it was marked by an overwhelming low turn out.

For the recall process to continue, INEC needed 51% or 98,364 signatures of the original signatories of the petition. However, after the exercise, only the signatures of 5.34% of the total signatories to the petition could be verified, ending the process.

The process was notably marked by controversies such as forged signatures and names of dead persons affixed to the recall petition. Melaye has always maintained that the recall was backed with state resources by Governor Yahaya Bello whom he's been in open conflict with for months.

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