The Transition Monitoring Group has warned against the use of state resources by public office holders for campaigns and other political party activities.
In a statement on Saturday, TMG Chairman Auwal Musa Rafsanjani, who is also the executive director of the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre, noted that the use of taxpayer funds and the collective resources of Nigerians to finance personal political ambition was unacceptable.
The group said: “We are living witnesses of how ministers and other senior public officials use the state apparatus such as government planes, public cars as well as funds to manage their personal ambitions, which , wrongly, does not create a level playing field and is a bad omen for our democracy.
Mr. Rafsanjani noted that the decision of the 2023 public officer candidates is shocking and alarming, saying that even with the huge challenges facing the country at the moment, they still had the audacity to run for positions with limited public resources.
The TMG boss has denounced the exorbitant amount of money demanded for nomination and expression of interest forms to participate in the party’s primaries, saying such sums can only be awarded to people with access to funds corrupt and to those who planned to recover their wealth once elected. in the public service would be able to buy it.
He therefore called on the Independent National Electoral Commission, the police and anti-corruption agencies to highlight the huge exchange of money at party conventions.
He urged that they monitor how candidates bribe delegates with various amounts of money, saying the amount of resources distributed by candidates, usually in international currencies like US dollars States, had shown that the highest bidder usually won elections.
He advised INEC to ensure that parties submit their audit reports as required.
Similarly, Mr. Rafsanjani instructed political appointees and other officials seeking elective positions to tender their resignations, noting that political appointees have been mandated to resign from their appointments as conditions for contesting the upcoming elections in accordance with the 84 of the recently signed electoral law into law.
He said: “Many public government officials make a public statement of their intention to stand for election and still stand by their positions, which is contrary to section 84(12) of the Elections Act 2022 as amended.
“To this end, in accordance with the provision, all political candidates and other officials serving in government aspiring to political office must submit their resignation letters and conduct their campaigns legally, as this will not be tolerated by Nigerians.
Mr. Rafsanjani also revealed that the TMG and its members would vigorously observe the conduct of the primary elections and ensure that there would be adequate compliance with the electoral law to ensure electoral transparency in the country.
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