Chuks Okocha in Abuja
Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Thursday said it would publish the personal particulars of nominated candidates for the Bayelsa and Kogi states gubernatorial elections today.
Similarly, INEC said it has observed from a preliminary review of the list and personal particulars submitted by the political parties that some of the governorship and deputy governorship candidates are below the minimum age prescribed by the constitution for these positions.
The implication is that some of the governorship candidates and the deputy governorship candidates may be disqualified for not meeting the age qualifications limit.
But the position of INEC may contradict the recently signed law of the Not Too Young To Run Act.
Under the Not Too Young to Run Act, candidates standing for governorship elections are expected to have attained the age of 35, but the commission said its preliminary review of candidates’ particulars showed a breach of the law.
INEC, in a statement by its National Commissioner of Information and Public Enlightenment, Festus Okoye, said the personal particulars of the nominees would be published on the notice boards of our offices in Yenagoa and Lokoja.
According to him, as required by law, the commission monitored the primaries of the political parties and the list of aspirants emerged has since been published on its website and other platforms.
“From our records, 64 political parties conducted primaries in Bayelsa State as against 59 in Kogi State. Out of these, 52 political parties for Bayelsa State and 49 for Kogi State respectively submitted the list of candidates and their personal particulars at the close of nomination at 6.00 p. m. on Monday 9th September, 2019.
“While some of the political parties that conducted primaries did not submit any list and personal particulars of candidates, a few failed to submit within the time limit prescribed by the commission.
“Out of the 101 nominees for the two states, 91 are male, representing 90%, while 10 are female, representing 10% of all the nominees. Of the 52 nominees for Bayelsa State, six are female, while 46 are male. The corresponding figures for Kogi State are: four female and 45 male nominees,” the INEC commissioner stated.
He explained that the publication of the personal particulars of nominees is for members of the public to make any claims and objections regarding these candidates as required by law.
INEC reminded the political parties of the need to keep to the timelines in the timetable and schedule of activities, requesting strict compliance. The commission added that it looked forward towards working with political parties and all stakeholders to make the forthcoming elections in the two states free, fair and credible.