Officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission on Tuesday stormed the Senate and served Sen. Dino Melaye, the Senator representing Kogi West Senatorial District his recall notice. One of the officials who spoke to Vigil360 said the Senator had been evading the commission since the court Okayed his recall process. He stated that they got information that the Senator was at the National Assembly Complex following the resumption of sitting that was why they came.
While pointing to the recall materials, the official said they are for the Senator to verify and make his case. Meanwhile, Sen. Melaye said any action carried out by INEC on the recall process was illegal and would amount to nullity since the 90 days window provided by the constitution for the service of recall had elapsed.
According to him "It is clear that by the provisions of Section 69(b) of the 1999 Constitution, INEC must act on the petition purportedly presented to it on June 23, 2017 by conducting a referendum within 90 days of receipt of the petition. “The 90 days period as provided for in the Constitution for conducting the referendum after our verification, elapsed on Sept. 23, 2017.
“The time having elapsed, I cannot under the circumstance, aid and abet INEC to further infringe on the provisions of the Constitution, which I have sworn to defend,’’ he said.
He denied claims that he was evading services stressing that his lawyer, Mike Ozekhome (SAN) had even requested INEC to produce the petition in the course of hearing the matter in court. “I am not evading the service of any purported petition on me by INEC. As a matter of fact, my lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome, served INEC a notice to produce the said petition in the course of hearing of this matter but INEC failed to produce the petition in court.
“I have also instructed my lawyer to challenge the jurisdiction of the trial court to entertain an ex parte application for the service on me. “In view of the lapse of time, I shall no longer be in a haste to take any further step in this matter so as not to aid any party, especially INEC in breaching the Constitution,’’ he said.
Recall that Sen. Melaye's constituents had accused him of incompetency and poor representation.