By Ezeocha Nzeh
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) disclosed Tuesday that a total of 17 out of the registered 18 political parties have met the Commission’s requirement to contest the October 10 governorship election in Ondo state
INEC in a statement issued by its National Commissioner in charge of Information and Voter Education, Festus Okoye, noted that the political parties complied with the commission’s rules for the conduct of their primary elections, adding that they also complied with the procedures to submit the names list of candidates
Okoye said the Commission met Tuesday, 28 July 2020 and deliberated on a number of issues including the Nasarawa Central State Constituency Election scheduled for 8 August 2020, preparations for the Edo Governorship Election holding on 19 September 2020 and the conduct of party primaries for the Ondo State Governorship Election scheduled to hold on 10 October 2020.
“On 6 February 2020, the Commission published the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the Ondo Governorship Election and gave political parties interested in sponsoring and nominating candidates between 2 and 25 July 2020 to conduct party primaries and till 6pm of 28 July 2020 for the submission of the List and Particulars of nominated candidates.
“Seventeen out of the 18 registered Political Parties gave the Commission the requisite statutory notice of their intention to conduct primaries and they conducted primaries for the purposes of nominating candidates for the Governorship Election.
“The Commission opened its dedicated nomination portal on 21 July 2020 and some of the political parties that conducted their primaries before the 25 July deadline seized the opportunity and uploaded the list and particulars of their nominated candidates ahead of the cut off time of 6pm on 28 July 2020. As at 4.08pm today, 28 July 2020, all the 17 Political Parties had submitted the List and Particulars of their nominated candidates using the INEC dedicated portal.”
It noted that list and Personal Particulars of the candidates as submitted by the 17 political parties will be uploaded on the commission’s website and published in its State Office in Akure, Ondo State on Friday 31 July 2020 as well as its social media platforms, in compliance with section 31(3) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended).
“By section 31 (5) & (6) of the Electoral Act, a person who has reasonable grounds to believe that any information given in the affidavit or any of the documents submitted by any of the candidates is false, may file a suit in Court seeking a declaration that such information is false. If the Court determines that the information is false, the Court shall issue an Order disqualifying the candidate from contesting the election.
“We urge members of the public to take an active part in the vetting of the List and Particulars of nominated candidates to enhance transparency in the party nomination processes,” INEC stated