The Abuja School of Social and Political Thoughts has reminded the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) that submitting names of persons who did not win duly conducted primaries on INEC portals is contrary to the electoral law. This was contained in a statement signed by its Director, Dr. Sam Amadi.
The statement in part read, “It is being reported that some high-profile politicians who did not win INEC- monitored primaries of their parities are being submitted by their party leaders, in clear violation of the provisions of the electoral law. “Two notable cases are those of the President of the Senate and the former Minister of Niger Delta Affair, who contested for the APC Presidential Primary and lost, but are making frantic efforts to regain senate seats from the winners of the primaries.
“The winners of the duly conducted primaries have refused to give up their tickets. Notwithstanding, the party reportedly has uploaded the Senate President and the Minister of Niger Delta as senatorial candidates, although they did not participate in a valid primary. “Submitting names of persons who did not win duly conducted primaries on INEC portals is contrary to the electoral law. The electoral law requires that only persons who won duly conducted primaries should be submitted as candidates.
“It is INEC that determines what is a duly conducted primary, based on its guidelines and the electoral law. The practice in the past where INEC allowed parties to make wrong and fraudulent entries and hoped that the courts will reverse them has gone with the new Electoral Act which now empowers INEC to reverse such fraudulent and wrong actions by the parties. “Section 84 (1) of the Electoral Act, 2022 provides that “A political party seeking to nominate candidates for elections under this Act shall hold primaries for the aspirants to all elective positions which shall be monitored by the Commission.”