Presidential Poll: INEC Clears Tinubu, Atiku, Obi, 15 Others | The Lafete Magazine
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Presidential Poll: INEC Clears Tinubu, Atiku, Obi, 15 Others

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has given final clearance to the 18 candidates nominated by the registered political parties, to contest next year’s presidential election. The Commission also said 4, 223 candidates have been cleared to contest various positions in the National Assembly.
The breakdown of this figure showed that 1, 101 are vying for the 109 seats in the Senate while 3,122 are contesting for the 360 House of Representatives positions. Among presidential candidates cleared by INEC, according to a statement by the National Commissioner Festus Okoye, including the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, despite the case instituted in the court challenging the claims he submitted with his nomination form.


The candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, his Labour Party (LP) and New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) counterparts, Mr. Peter Obi and Dr. Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, respectively, were also cleared.


A Federal High Court in Abuja, on Monday, refused to disqualify Tinubu and Obi for using ‘placeholders’ as running mates before substituting them with substantive candidates.
The suit was filed by the PDP. Okoye explained that the list published contained: “The names of candidates validly nominated for national elections at the close of party primaries and the period earmarked for withdrawal and substitution of candidates.”


He, however, stated that in accordance with section 31 of the Electoral Act, voluntarily withdrawn candidates within the stipulated period allowed, and substituted by their parties, were cleared to contest.
Okoye, however, warned that no withdrawal or substitution of candidates would further be “allowed except in the event of death as provided in section 34(1) of the Electoral Act or pursuant to an order of a court of competent jurisdiction.”


INEC had given July 15 as the last day of substitution of candidates for national elections, and August 12 for state elections.
According to the list, David Umahi, governor of Ebonyi, is the All Progressives Congress (APC) senatorial candidate for Ebonyi south, while for Yobe north district, there is no senatorial candidate listed for the APC.


For Yobe north, there has been some controversy over the APC senatorial ticket, and the matter is currently in court. At a primary organised by the party in May, Bashir Machina had won unopposed, but Ahmad Lawan, senate president, was said to have participated in another primary organised by the APC, after he contested the party’s presidential ticket and lost in June.


Meanwhile, Godswill Akpabio, former minister of Niger Delta affairs, also made the final list as the APC candidate for Akwa Ibom north-west. The National Commissioner disclosed that the final list of candidates for state elections (governorship and state constituencies) would be published on October 4.
He stated that INEC was aware: “That not all the political parties conducted primaries in all the constituencies, submitted the particulars of candidates that emerged from valid primaries or substituted their candidates after fresh primaries within 14 days as provided in section 33 of the Electoral Act.
“This has led to numerous litigations, some of which are ongoing. Where the Commission was served with court orders by aggrieved aspirants or candidates before the publication of this list, these have been indicated under the remark column.

Tags : AtikuObiPresidential PollTinubu

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