The group urged the ICC prosecutor, Mrs Fatou Bensouda, to investigate and consider the possibility of prosecuting perpetrators of electoral violence and corruption, particularly officials of the two leading parties, the All Progressives Congress and the Peoples Democratic Party.
SERAP’s Deputy Director, Kolawole Oludare, said in a statement on Sunday that the group, in the petition dated November 16, complained to the ICC about the persistent electoral violence in Nigeria, often resulting in killings, over the years and the government’s failure to stop it.
SERAP said, “The events in the Bayelsa and Kogi elections suggest criminal conduct within the jurisdiction of the ICC. If the results of the preliminary investigation suggest that further investigation is warranted, the ICC should work with Nigerian anti-corruption agencies on the matter.
“Election-related corruption and violence are not just minor infractions; they suggest serious crimes against Nigerians, in particular, crimes against humanity.
“In the ICC case on Kenyan election violence, the culture of impunity was considered one reason why violence had been ‘normalised’ as a means of political struggle. We, therefore, urge you to investigate allegations of corruption, violence and killings in Bayelsa and Kogi elections, if the ICC is to contribute to preventing escalations in future elections, including the general elections scheduled to hold in 2023.”
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