Conflicting court orders can disrupt the conduct of elections in Edo – INEC warns

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has responded to the conflicting court orders issued as a result of the internal crisis rocking some political parties across the country.

However, the INEC’s national commissioner for information and voter education Festus Okoye said on Tuesday, June 23 that they summoned a meeting due to the crisis which might impede the smooth conduct of primaries and the forthcoming governorship election in Edo state.

Okoye divulged that they resolved that the conduct of party primaries and resolution of conflicts should end on June 27, while the submission of the list of candidates the parties propose to present at the election and affidavits of validly nominated candidates will close at 6 pm on June 29, 2020.

The INEC Commissioner said; 

“In view of this and as part of its commitment to deepen the use of technology in elections, the commission will conduct a training program for Liaison Officers nominated by all the registered Political Parties on the use of the INEC Portal for uploading nomination forms of candidates.

“The training will take place at the Conference Hall of the Commission on Thursday 26th and Friday 27th June 2020 in two batches, to allow for physical distancing in line with the COVID-19 protocols.

“Political Parties should note that the organization and scheduling of various activities and processes leading to the conduct of elections are complex and involve extensive and careful planning and any disruption of these processes comes at a huge cost to the nation.

“The spate and tenor of pre-election litigations and the conflicting orders emanating therefrom can harm the smooth conduct of primaries and the upcoming elections.”

The electoral commission which stated that it is ready to obey all orders and judgments in accordance with the rule of law added that it is closely monitoring cases arising from the administration of political parties, conduct of primaries, and nomination of candidates.

Furthermore, the INEC also disclosed that it considered the report from the meeting of the inter-agency consultative committee on election security (ICCES), which recently approved a code of conduct and rules of engagement for security officials on electoral duty. This will be uploaded on the websites of INEC, the office of the NSA, and the Nigerian police force on June 25.

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