Electoral body releases timetable for 2019 polls

INEC Fixes Date For Anambra Central Senatorial Re-run Election

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Wednesday issued certificates of registration to Mrs. Sarah Jubril- led political party, Justice Must Prevail Party (JMPP) alongside 20 other newly cleared political parties.

Newsmen report that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has been barred by a court from participating in the election.

Yakubu said that the conduct of party primaries, including the resolution of disputes arising from the primaries for national and state elections had been slated for between August 18 and October 7, 2018.

It said the earlier approved election timetable which scheduled the presidential and National Assembly elections for February 16 and governorship and state assembly polls for March 2, 2019 still stands. By these decisions, the Commission fixed Saturday, 16th February, 2019, as the date for Presidential and National Assembly elections while Governorship and State Assembly elections will hold on Saturday, 2nd March, 2019.

Nigeria's ongoing challenges include the deadly Boko Haram insurgency and a weak economy.

The INEC official said that a total of 7,670 ad-hoc workers would conduct the election in 1,548 polling units.

"As political parties and candidates canvass the support of the electorate, the Commission wishes to appeal to all and sundry to eschew bitterness and conduct their activities with decorum".

The chairman said that the last date for the submission of nomination forms by political parties has also been scheduled for December 3 for president and NASS elections, and Dec, 17 for state elections.

The same Act further states that corporate bodies cannot donate money to political parties and no private individual can donate more than N1m to any aspirant or candidate.

He added that the conduct of party primaries for the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Area Council election has also been scheduled for between September 4 and October 27.

Yakubu stated that conflicts within political parties affect the commission's preparation for elections just as disputes among political parties on candidature for election.

Orji while responding to questions from stakeholders condemned the issue of vote buying which participants complained characterized last governorship election held in Nov.18, 2017 in the state. "The Commission is determined to build on this legacy by ensuring that our elections keep getting better", Yakubu pledged.

The Chairman said that political parties were also expected to submit names of their agents for the elections on February 1, 2019.

Governorship, National/State Assemblies candidates are also to have been picked on the same date.

Campaigns for the governorship and state assembly are scheduled to commence on December the 1, 2018.

The 2019 general election is going to be a straight battle between the same rival parties as INEC Chairman, Prof.

"The Commission is moving away from the culture of quick fix, fire brigade approach to the management of elections in Nigeria".

He disclosed that 1,558 constituencies elections made up presidential, 29 governorship elections, out of which seven are staggered would be conducted in 2019.

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