INEC records 1,000 pre-election litigations in 2023 general election

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The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, says over 1,000 pre-election lawsuit were failed against them in the build-up to the 2023 general election.

Mrs Oluwatoyin Babalola, INEC Director, Legal Drafting and Clearance, stated this during a two-day capacity workshop for journalists in Akwanga Nasarawa State.

The presentation was titled, ‘Effects of Litigation on INEC’s Preparations for Kogi, Imo, And Bayelsa Governorship Election.’

She said the pre-election litigations were borne out of primaries conducted by political parties, substitution of candidates, and failure of parties to adhere to their constitution and timetable for the conduct of the election.

Pre-election litigations are matters in which the cause of action arose before the conduct of election proper, as provided for in Section 285(14) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).

“Beyond the impact of pre-election matters on preparation for the election, the commission is sometimes ordered to withdraw the certificate of return issued to a candidate who emerged winner and issue a fresh certificate of return to a judgment creditor.

“After the 2019 general elections, the commission was ordered to issue 94 certificates of return in pre-election matters.”

Mrs Babalola added that INEC had to withdraw seven Certificates of Return earlier issued and reissued the same pursuant to court orders in the 2023 general election.

Also, “In another matter, the Federal High Court in Suit no. FHC/ABJ/CS/821/2023 –Chief Denesuoyefa Koloma v. Chief Sylva Timipre Marlin & 2 Ors., disqualified the candidate of the APC, Sylva Timipre Marlin.

“It also directed INEC to remove his name from the list of contestants for the office of governor of Bayelsa State on the platform of the APC or any other political party for the election.

“The Commission has complied with the judgments in respect of Kogi state via the publication of Amendment No. 1 to the Final list of candidates which was published on the Commission’s website on Sept. 26.

“The Orders as they relate to candidates will impact on the production of Form EC8E (Declaration of result).”

She added that, “It is worthy of note that the Commission is bound to comply with decisions of Courts as stipulated in Section 287 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).

“The above-cited judgment on PRP will necessitate the reproduction of ballot papers in Imo State having regard to the fact that ballot papers and result sheets are customised.“

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Queen Ferry
Queen Ferry
Chinyere Treasure Ikechukwu also known as Queen Ferry, is a Nigerian business Executive, social media savvy Journalist and Content Editor with over seven years experience. She serves as the Vice-Chairman of Naijatraffic Limited. If Treasure is not researching/blogging, she will be making delicious delicacy.

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