Ahead of the presidential convention and primaries for the emergence of presidential, governorship, national and state assemblies candidates, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has mandated political parties to furnish the commission with details of their members’ register.

Chairman of the INEC, Professor Mahmood Yakubu made the demand on Friday at the commission quarterly consultative meeting with Resident Electoral Commissioners, (RECs) held in Abuja.

Professor Yakubu who disclosed that only 14 political parties have since submitted their notices and schedule of primaries to the Commission, out of 18 parties eligible to partake in next general elections, further declared that by virtue of provisions of the Electoral Act, it was mandatory for political parties to make their register available to the Commission not later than 30 days before the date fixed for primaries, congresses and conventions.

He further revealed that only one political party has since complied with that provision of the Electoral Act.

He said:” As you are all aware, the Commission released the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the 2023 General Election a day after the Electoral Act 2022 was signed into law. The next activity under the Timetable is the conduct of party primaries by political parties. So far, 14 parties have submitted their notices and schedule of primaries to the Commission. As required by law, the Commission shall monitor the primaries in the constituencies where the parties intend to field candidates. “This means that the State offices will be heavily involved in the exercise. I urge you to exercise our monitoring responsibility with absolute neutrality. “There are sanctions for violation of the law and you should know this and warn our staff accordingly.

“Let me also seize this opportunity to remind political parties that by the provision of Sec. 77 of the Electoral Act 2022, each party is required to maintain a membership register in hard and soft copy and to make such register available to the Commission not later than 30 days before the date fixed for primaries, congresses and conventions. So far, only one political party has complied. It is a mandatory requirement of the law and all parties are required to comply. Doing otherwise is like going into an election without the register of voters. There can be no credible primary or general election without a credible register of voters.”

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