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INEC right to reject Zamfara APC candidates, court rules

INEC right to reject Zamfara APC candidates, court rules
January 25
13:44 2019

A federal high court in Abuja has upheld the decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) not to accept the list of candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Zamfara state.

The commission based the action on the inability of the ruling party to conduct primary election before deadline.

Crisis had stalled the primary as supporters of Abdulaziz Yari, governor of the state, and Kabir Marafa, a senator, clashed over the exercise on different occasions.

Marfa had said the party would not be able to present candidates for 2019 if the leadership of the APC did not call Yari to order.

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INEC had refused to accept the appeal of the leadership of the party which argued that it had the right to present candidates.

Adams Oshiomhole, national chairman of the APC, had challenged the action of the commission, saying it is incorrect to state that primaries did not hold in Zamfara.

While he admitted that there was violence when the national working committee (NWC) of the party went to Zamfara for the exercise, Oshiomhole said the primaries took place but there was no voting.

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He had accused INEC of not being fair to the APC, saying the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kano state did not conduct primary yet the commission did not take any action against the party.

After the bid to make INEC changed its stance did not achieve the desired result, some supporters of the APC had headed to the court.

At the court on Friday, Ijeoma Ojukwu, the presiding judge, said it was not the fault of INEC that APC failed to conduct a valid primary within the scheduled period.

Onjukwu said INEC’s action was intended to curb impunity among political parties and politicians.

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