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INEC Chairman, Yakubu, chides parties over allowing court determine election results



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The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu, at a meeting with Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) at the INEC headquarters, Abuja, subtly blamed political parties for the determination of elections results and pronouncement of winners contrary to INEC record by the courts. The INEC chairman cautioned political parties to play according to the rules and ensure the upholding of democratic values in the electoral process.  Prof. Yakubu,therefore, challenged political parties to eschew from illicit practices that would degenerate into the determination of results of elections by the courts in subsequent elections.

In the preparations for the governorship elections in Edo and Ondo states scheduled for September 19 and October 10, respectively, Prof. Yakubu bemoaned the legal tussles which made the Supreme Court determine the winners of elections in some states. The INEC chairman admonished that the court could still determine results of elections of political parties continue to hold arbitrary primary elections, including improper screening of aspirants before nominating candidates for elections. He noted that this has caused protracted litigations.

Prof. Yakubu, subsequently, remarked: “The end of tenure governorship elections in Edo and Ondo are holding later in the year.

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“Given recent experience with some governorship elections, political parties need to do more to avoid the conduct of acrimonious primaries or failure to observe due diligence in the screening of their candidates, resulting in protracted litigations and eventual determination of the outcome of elections by orders of the court.”

The INEC chairman enjoined political parties to be conscious of the “two critical dates” in the timetable released by INEC recently.

 “Party primaries for the democratic election and nomination of candidates for the Governorship election in Edo State must be held from June 2-27,” adding, “The date for Ondo State is July 2-25.

 “We will also rigorously monitor the primaries and where necessary, apply sanctions as provided by law,” Prof. Yakubu said.