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INEC suspends 205 staff over N23bn bribery scandal

The Independent National Electoral Commission has suspended 205 of its staff indicted in an alleged 23 billion naira bribery scandal while 70 others have been referred back for further investigation.

An election monitoring body, the West African Network of Election Observers, made up of mainly retired senior INEC officials, which allegedly facilitated the bribery has also been blacklisted by INEC for alleged complicity in the scam.

The suspended staff are to be placed on half salaries pending the final determination of the cases filed against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

The decisions were made last night after a management meeting at INEC headquarters.

Briefing journalists after the meeting, INEC National Commissioner, Mr MOHAMMED HARUNA, said the suspension followed consideration of the report of its disciplinary committee on the EFCC interim report on bribery charges during the 2015 general election.

While reiterating the commitment of INEC to defending the integrity of the electoral process, the national commissioner vowed that the commission will continue to take stern action against its officials, who compromise its core values of integrity, transparency and impartiality in the conduct of elections.

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