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Ondo Poll: INEC asks CSOs to Monitor Party Primaries



Ahead of the Ondo State governorship election, the Chairman, the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, has urged Civil Society Organisations to engage with political parties and observe their primaries.

Yakubu stated this at the first quarterly consultative meeting with CSOs in Abuja on Wednesday.

“For Ondo State, political parties will commence their primaries for the governorship election in the next two weeks. Sixteen political parties have indicated interest in participating in the election.

“I urge Civil Society Organisations to engage with political parties and observe their primaries just as you engage with INEC and deploy observers to the main election conducted by the commission.

“By doing so, you will strengthen your advocacy for inclusivity for groups such as women, youths, and Persons with Disability that are under-represented in elective offices at the National and State levels,” the INEC boss said.

For the Edo governorship poll, Yakubu complained that only eight parties have uploaded the particulars of their candidates to the INEC portal with only four days left to the deadline.

“For Edo State, 18 political parties conducted their primaries monitored by the commission. Going by the provision of the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the election, political parties have 20 days from March 4, 2024, to upload the list and personal particulars of their candidates to our dedicated web portal.

“As of this morning, eight parties have done so. We expect the other parties to do so before the deadline of 6pm on March 24, 2024, when the portal automatically shuts down.

“Thereafter, the commission will publish the personal particulars of the candidates (Form EC9) on March 31, 2024, for public scrutiny as required by law,” he noted.

He, however, threatened that the commission would embark on ‘No Observation Report, No Accreditation’ if defaulters failed to submit their observation reports.

“While many of you have submitted your reports, some accredited observers are yet to do so for the general election, supplementary elections, off-cycle elections, bye-elections, and re-run elections.

“May I therefore seize this opportunity to remind those who are yet to submit their observation reports that it is mandatory to do so being one of the conditions for eligibility to observe future elections.

“Going forward, the Commission will operate strictly on the policy of “No Observation Report, No Accreditation,” the INEC chairman said.

The Edo State governorship election is scheduled to be held September 21, 2024, while the Ondo State governorship election will be held November 16, 2024.

Yakubu, on Tuesday, expressed the frustration of the electoral body over the rancorous primary elections in various political parties ahead of the governorship poll in Edo State.

The INEC chairman said the electoral body found such a situation disruptive and called on political parties to adhere strictly to their proposed dates and modes of primaries.

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