IPAC seeks poll offenders’ commission

The Inter-Party Advisory Council has recommended the establishment of an Election Tribunal Offences Commission to monitor the finances of political parties.

The chairman of IPAC and the presidential candidate of  the Progressives Peoples Alliance, Chief Peter Ameh,  said  the council  had commenced discussions with the Independent National Electoral Commission over the issue “because when it comes to monitoring election campaign expenses, INEC is overburdened and it cannot prosecute.”

Ameh said,  “The mandate of  the Election Tribunal Offences Commission is to look at every little infringement and criminal act that constitute obstacles to our electoral process, including those who have  the mandate to N1bn  but are spending N20bn  and those who have the mandate to spend N200m  for governorship but  are spending N1bn.”

He spoke in an interview in Abuja with The PUNCH during a strategy meeting on media portrayal of female candidates in the 2019 elections.

The event was organised by the Nigerian Women Trust Fund in partnership  with  the Women in Politics Forum, The Voice of Women and supported by Australian Aid.

The  Chief Executive Officer of NWTF, Mufuliat Fijabi, said,  “ungendered media coverage is a major limiting factor for women in leadership since time immemorial”.

She said, “Women in leadership in Nigeria encounter media bias, making it harder for them to serve in public leadership positions. They have to be more careful with what they say or do, as it is often judged differently. Once women aspire to leadership positions, their looks, laughs, handclaps, hairstyles, dressing and sex appeals become fodder for all the corners of media establishment.

“The criticism from  reporters, analysts, and social media becomes laced with unsavoury clichés and stereotypes of women. The comments could sometimes be personal and misogynistic.”

Ameh stated that the PPA would not go against the provisions of the Electoral Act on how campaign finances would be sourced and spent.

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