I won’t put APC on ballot in Rivers, Zamfara ― INEC Chairman ~ Nigeria News + Celebrities Gist and Naija Gossip + Nigeria Gossip

Friday, 22 February 2019

I won’t put APC on ballot in Rivers, Zamfara ― INEC Chairman

For the second time in one week, the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Professor Mahmood Yakubu has said he would not revert his position in excluding the All Progressives Congress from fielding candidates in Rivers and Zamfara state.
He restated his stance yesterday during a question and answer session with journalists.
The Commission in a memo addressed to APC national chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole last year had notified the ruling party that it would not be allowed to field candidates for elective offices in the elections, except for the office of President.
Findings revealed that the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, SAN had written a memo to the INEC chairman, asking him to put the APC on the ballot in Zamfara State.
The AGF in a letter dated, February 13, 2019, and addressed to INEC chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu advised the latter to postpone conduct of   State, National Assemblies and governorship elections in Zamfara State.
Malami based his request on the decision of the Court of Appeal Court, Sokoto Division.
The Court of Appeal in the judgement had declared that the APC  conducted valid primaries for the various elective positions in the state.
Malami in his letter cited Sections 38 and 39 of the Electoral (Amendment) Act 2010 and submitted that granting the concession of postponing the polls in Zamfara State in the light of the Court of Appeal’s judgment, was not a matter of doing APC favour but a right the party was entitled to.
In Rivers,  a judgement of the Supreme Court, delivered by  Justice Sidi Barge upheld the order of a Federal High Court, Port Harcourt, by Justice Chiwendu Nworgu, nullifying the All Progressives Congress primaries in Rivers State.
The trial court had held that the primaries were held in disobedience to a court judgement barring the party from conducting congresses,  pending the determination of a suit filed by 22 aggrieved members of the party.
But Professor Yakubu told newsmen that he was bound to respect courts pronouncements on the APC impasse in both states.
He said: “The position of the commission remains the position we announced before now. That is that the parties in question by court order and by understanding and interpretation of the judgement of two courts of coordinate jurisdiction delivered same day in the case of Zamfara, cannot field a candidate in the 2019 general election for National Assembly, governorship and State Assembly elections. That does not include the presidential election. The position of the commission has not changed.
“Once the court of law makes the pronouncement, all persons and authorities are duty bound to obey. If the judgement is from the Supreme Court that the end to the litigation.”
He dismissed insinuation of forces within the Commission bent on frustrating his intention to conduct free, fair and transparent elections.
“I have no evidence that the Commission has been sabotaged, I want to assure you that the election would hold on Saturday. Don’t just ask me, look at the level of engagement of staff and movement of staff, it shows clearly that we are fully prepared. “



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