16 Political Parties To Contest Edo Election, Says INEC
Ahead of the September 21 governorship election in Edo State, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says 16 political parties will participate in the exercise.
INEC National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Sam Olumekun, disclosed this in a statement on Thursday.
“Sixteen political parties have notified the Commission of their intention to participate in the election as well as their preferred modes and dates of primaries,” he said.
“As the Commission is set to deploy its monitoring teams, political parties are hereby reminded that Edo State is the Constituency for the election. Therefore, primaries must take place within the State in line with Sections 84(4) and 5(b) of the Electoral Act 2022.”
The electoral body also admonished political parties to avoid “unnecessary postponement, arbitrary changes of venues of their primaries, wholesale change of delegates’ list or the submission of names that did not emerge from valid primaries as candidates for the election”.
INEC also warned against “rancorous primaries that lead to the breakdown of law and order often as a result of non-adherence to the provision of their constitutions and guidelines. These are some of the issues that lead to a large number of pre-election litigations”.
Earlier, the electoral umpire released the timetable and schedule of activities for the Edo State off-cycle governorship election, fixing September 21 for the crucial poll.
The commission also mandated parties to conduct their primaries between February 1 and 24.
It argued that by Section 82 of the Electoral Act 2022, political parties are required to give the INEC at least 21 days’ notice before the date fixed for the conduct of their primaries, saying the last date for such notification lapsed on February 4, 2024.