30 Anambra House of Assembly Members-elect Get Certificates of Return from INEC
The 30 members-elect who emerged from the March 18 House of Assembly elections across Anambra state, on Friday received their Certificates of Return from the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC.
TNC Correspondent in Awka reports that the certificate presentation ceremony took place at the INEC headquarters, Awka.
Of the 30 members-elect who received their certificates, 16 belong to the ruling party in the state, the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, while seven are of the Labour Party, LP.
Four of the members elect are of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP while the Young Progressives Party, YPP has 3 members-elect.
Addressing the gathering, the INEC National Commissioner supervising Anambra state, Barrister Festus Okoye, said the exercise is in line with the provisions of the electoral act, Section 72 subsection 1 of the Electoral Act.
“This provision mandates the commission to issue a certificate of return within a period of 14 days to all those who have been elected and returned by the various returning officers in the election just conducted,” he said.
Okoye reminded the members-elect that their primary responsibility is to support the enthronement of quality governance in the state through the making of people-oriented laws.
He advised them against pursuing functions which do not fall under their capacity, saying such misplacement of priority has dire consequences for the nation’s democracy.
The INEC National Commissioner also tasked the elected representatives of Ndi Anambra to protect and defend the nation’s democracy, and not to allow themselves to be used to disrupt the nation’s democracy.
“All over the world, democracy is an ongoing project. Even the most advanced countries we know, have not come to that final point where they can say that they have arrived in terms of Democracy, so Nigeria cannot be an exception.
“With this at the back of our minds, we must continue to work hard to finetune our democratic processes and for you as would-be lawmakers, your role is sacrosanct.
“You must therefore dedicate yourselves to the sustenance of democracy in the country and uphold every tenet of legislative proceedings so that your constituents who elected you would get the true dividends of democracy,” Okoye advised.
Earlier, while presenting the Certificates of Return to the members-elect, the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner for Anambra state, Dr Queen-Elizabeth Agwu while appreciating God that they did not lose a soul in the election, equally appreciated INEC chairman Professional Mammud Yakubu for giving them a level playing ground.
She thanked Ndi Anambra for their support and encouragement and said that she is proud that she has fulfilled her promise of conducting free, fair and credible election in Anambra.
She said; “I make bold to say that INEC Anambra did not collect any dime from anyone before, during and after the elections.
“When I came as REC in Anambra, I had promised that the Commission under my watch will do its utmost best to restore the confidence of the people in her ability to conduct free, fair and credible elections.
“Today, I can boldly say that we have taken a major step towards accomplishing that. The elections in Anambra were peaceful and reflected the true yearnings of the people,” the Anambra REC boasted.
In their various reactions, the member-elect for Ihiala two constituency Honourable Golden, his Idemili South constituency counterpart, Honourable Emeka Igwe, and that of Njikoka One constituency, Honourable Chidi Ibemeka and the member representing Anaocha two at the Anambra state House of Assembly, all candidates of APGA thanked their constituents for the confidence they reposed in them and pledged to do all within their powers to enact laws that will improve their welfare.
Also speaking, the member representing Anambra West constituency, Honourable Obalim Udoba, Nkechi Ogbuefi of Labour party member elect for Anaocha one constituency and the only female law maker in the eighth Assembly, noted that they are happy to be given an opportunity to serve the people, adding that they would fulfil their promise to them.