The Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) has described reports that it connived with some political parties to manipulate the list of candidates for the July 22 council election as absurd.
The Chairman of the commission, Ayotunde Phillips, spoke at a media briefing in Lagos on LASIEC’s preparations for the election.
She said that the commission, under her watch, would not, under any guise, interfere in the internal affairs of parties.
“I wish to use this forum to state with all sense of responsibility that contrary to insinuations by some disgruntled persons that the commission connived with some political parties to manipulate the list of candidates, i wish to state that the responsibility for the conduct of primaries rests with parties and not the commission.
“The commission is only expected to obtain a list of candidates selected through the primaries organised by parties, which are expected to be observed by the commission.
“So, we find media reports accusing the commission of conniving with some members of some political parties to impose some unwanted candidates as absurd and ill-motivated to discredit the commission and the electoral process.
“The commission under my watch believes in the rule of law and due process and will not under any guise interfere in the internal affairs of parties,’’ the chairman said.
Phillips emphasised that the role of the media in mobilising the electorate and stabilising the electoral process cannot be over- emphasised.
She said that when the enormous powers of the media were, however, deployed negatively, the harm that could wreak on the society was better imagined.
The chairman appealed to the media to always strive to be patriotic and professional in their reportage of activities of the election.