The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has banned the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) from fielding candidates for elective positions in Zamfara state for the 2019 elections.
BREAKING: Senate Signs Nigeria Police Academy Bill Into Law
According to the electoral body, the decision was taken as a result of the failure of the party to elect its candidates within the stipulated period in accordance with the electoral act.
The ruling party failed to meet the October 7 deadline for conducting primaries to elect candidates for the elections.
It was gathered that the Zamfara State chapter of the APC had descended into serious crisis as political camps fought bitter and violent battles as they jostled to produce candidates for positions.
The major tussle was between the camps of the state Governor, Abdulaziz Yari, and a senator, Kabiru Marafa.
INEC has now notified the party’s national chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, in a letter titled “Failure To Conduct Party Primaries in Zamfara State Within The Stipulated Time Frame”, that it is not expecting any list of candidates from the party for Zamfara State.
The commission referred Mr Oshiomhole to the timetable and schedule of activities for the 2019 general elections released by the commission on January 9 2018.
“You would note from the timetable that the conduct of party primaries is scheduled to take place between 18th August and 7th October 2018.
“Kindly also refer to the last schedule communicated by your party to the commission on the dates of party primaries nationwide, including Zamfara vide your letter Ref. APC/NHDQ/ INEC/19/18/51 dated 3rd Oct. 2018.
“However, report received from our office in Zamfara State shows that no primaries were conducted by your party in the state, Notwithstanding that our officials were fully mobilized and deployed.”
INEC said based on the provisions of Section 87 and 31 of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended), “the commission does not expect that your party will submit names of any candidates from Zamfara State.
“For clarity, our position is that the All Progressives Congress (APC), will not be fielding candidates for the governorship, National Assembly and State Assembly Elections in Zamfara state for the 2019 for the general elections.”
The letter was signed by the acting secretary of the commission, Okechukwu Ndeche.