The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has reiterated its stance against accepting candidates nominated by political parties after the 6pm, Monday, June 29, 2020, deadline.
Chairman of the commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, handed the warning yesterday during the second virtual meeting of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES).
He urged parties to eschew tendencies that could lead to litigations in the conduct of their primaries: “The fact that this is our second meeting in less than two weeks underscores our commitment to the security of forthcoming governorship elections in Edo and Ondo states, as well as the increasing number of off-cycle elections across the country. Therefore, as we work towards the two governorship elections, we should equally prepare for six senatorial and five states assembly by-elections across nine states of the federation.
“At our last meeting, we agreed that the co-chairmen of ICCES (the chairman, INEC, and the National Security Adviser) should prepare and circulate a draft code of conduct for security personnel on election duty, based on the report of the special committee earlier set up to ensure collaboration and synergy in the deployment of security agencies for elections.
“The meeting also mandated the co-chairmen to take into consideration safety measures for security personnel in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. The draft policy has already been circulated for consideration and approval at this meeting. Thereafter, the policy will become part of the manual for training of security personnel and to guide their conduct during elections. The policy will be published for public information.
“Turning to Edo governorship election, all political parties interested in fielding candidates for the election are reminded that they must conclude their primaries for the nomination of candidates in the next 10 days. The deadline is Saturday, June 27. I must stress that the date is firm and fixed. There will be no extension of the deadline. While the conduct of primaries and nomination of candidates will be the sole responsibility of political parties, our officials will monitor the primaries as required by law.
“Already, the commission has published the date and mode of primaries for each of the 15 political parties that indicated their intention to participate in the election. Similarly, there will be no extension of time for political parties that fail to submit the names and other details of the candidates that emerge from their primaries using the dedicated portal created by the commission. For emphasis, the deadline is 6pm on Monday, June 29,” he said.