*BY: GEORGE ONWUDIWE*
The Youth Assembly of Nigeria, YAN, has demanded for the post of Senate President for the South East geo political zone, just as it called on the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC to release the Certificate of Return of Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha who won the Imo West Senatorial elections in the next 10 days.
This was disclosed by the National Speaker, Youth Assembly of Nigeria (YAN), Rt.Hon. Godstime Chukwubuikem Samuel after an emergency meeting of the leadership of YAN (Southern zone) held in Asaba on Monday 25th March, 2019.
He said that there were qualified persons from south east zone for the position.
He explained that ensuring a South-East Senate President would assuage the people of the region and bring to end issues of marginalization of the Igbos in the affairs of the nation.
While congratulating the President on his successful re-election, the YAN President said that the persuasions by the youth group before the general election contributed to the increased percentage of votes from the region for President Muhammadu Buhari.
They urged the ninth National Assembly and the APC National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomole to persuade party members in the Senate for the emergence of a South-East senator as the next Senate President.
Rt.Hon. Godstime Chukwubuikem Samuel stated that south east senators elect of the ruling APC like Governor. Rochas Okorocha and Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu are well qualified to emerge as President of the Senate.
He revealed that the Southern leadership of YAN also issued to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) 10 days ultimatum to issue Anayo Rochas Okorocha his Certificate of Return or face their wrath.
The Assembly noted that it was unconstitutional and against the electoral Act as amended for INEC to refuse the issuance of Certificate of Return to Rochas Okorocha after his declaration as the winner by the returning officer.
The statement reads in part: We demand that; as a matter of urgency the commission should without any further delay Present the certificate of return of the Senator elect in person of Owelle Rochas Anayo Okorocha to him to mend the breach of the constitution as INEC has no Constitutional right to withhold any certificate of return of any individual that has been pronounced elected and returned by the returning Officer, as only the tribunal can hear electoral matter and offences.
“It is only a court of competent jurisdiction that have such powers to deny any individual either returned or otherwise. That failure of the commission to present to the winner of the 23rd February election his certificate of return in person of Owelle Rochas Anayo Okorocha within 10 working days will attract a massive protest from the youth at the headquarters of the commission Abuja.
“We wish to categorically state that our citizens will not sit and watch institutions like INEC being bastardized by some few individuals at the detriment of our hard-earned democracy.