The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) will on September 20, 2022, publish the final list of candidates for national elections (Presidential, Senatorial and House of Representatives) as provided in Sec. 32(1) of the Electoral Act, according to the Chairman, Prof Mahmood Yakubu.
This will be followed on October 4, 2022 by the publication of the final list of candidates for State elections (Governorship and State Houses of Assembly). Public campaign by political parties is expected to begin on September 28, 2022.
All these form part of the remarks of Prof Yakubu at the expert meeting on conducting elections in volatile security environment, organized by the Center for Democracy and Development (CDD) in Abuja on Thursday.
Below is the full text:
1. On behalf of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), I would like to appreciate the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) for yet again providing a platform for stakeholders to discuss a very important enabler to the full participation of citizens in the electoral process i.e. election security. By bringing together experts, senior security officials and the INEC leadership to share experience and discuss security concerns ahead of the 2023 General Election, CDD hopes to kickstart further collaborative engagements among stakeholders around the security challenges ahead of the election.
2. I have no doubt in my mind that today’s meeting meets the twin tests of relevance and timeliness. The meeting is relevant because of the volatile security situation in some parts of the country and its implications on the forthcoming elections. It is timely because the election is fast approaching but there is still time to address the security concerns ahead of the election. Most appropriately, I believe that arising from the shared experience of participants at this meeting, specific recommendations will be made to further enrich our understanding of the security issues in the forthcoming election, the various dimensions of the challenges and, most importantly, possible measures to respond to them to ensure that elections peacefully hold nationwide as required by law.
3. The Commission welcomes this initiative and as Co-Chairman of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES), there is no doubt that the security agencies also welcome ideas and citizens’ support towards peaceful elections. Afterall, only recently the office of the Inspector General of Police organised a nationwide capacity-building for police personnel on election security. The Police was not only motivated by the same concern of ensuring a secure environment for the election but also enhancing the professionalism of police personnel on election duty.
4. Activities towards the 2023 General Election will enter the critical stages this month. In the next 19 days i.e. on 20th September 2022, the Commission will publish the final list of candidates for national elections (Presidential, Senatorial and House of Representatives) as provided in Sec. 32(1) of the Electoral Act 2022 and the Timetable and Schedule of Activities released by the Commission. This will be followed on 4th October 2022 by the publication of the final list of candidates for State elections (Governorship and State Houses of Assembly). Campaign in public by political parties will officially commence on 28th September 2022 as provided by Sec. 94(1) of the Electoral Act 2022. As campaigns commence, we appeal to all political parties and candidates to focus on issue-based campaigns. This is the best way to complement our efforts to ensure transparent elections in which only the votes cast by citizens determine the winner.
5. Once again, I appreciate the CDD for organizing this meeting and thank the security agencies and other stakeholders for supporting this initiative.
6. God bless.
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