We’re yet to decide on poll shift – INEC

INEC chairman, Atahiru Jega.

The Independent National Electoral Commission has said it is yet to take a decision to shift the general elections or hold them as scheduled.

Kayode Idowu, the spokesperson to the INEC Chairman, Attahiru Jega, disclosed this to PREMIUM TIMES a short while ago.

The presidential and national assembly elections has been fixed for February 14 while those of the governorship and state houses of assembly are scheduled for February 28.

The Nigerian government and the ruling Peoples Democratic Party have been pushing for the postponement of the polls citing the security challenge in the northeast zone of the country as well as INEC’s poor handling of the distribution of the Permanent Voters Cards as reasons.

Although the electoral body has insisted it was ready for the elections, the Council of State rose from its meeting on Thursday asking it to go ahead, while also advising it to consult widely on the matter.

This prompted INEC to commence a fresh round of consultation at the end of which it would address a press conference later today (Saturday) to announce the its decision on the matter.

Mr. Idowu told this newspaper via a text message no decision had been reached on postponement contrary to a report by an international news agency.

In fact when PREMIUM TIMES contacted Mr. Idowu, he spoke in low tone, saying his Commission was in a consultative meeting with the leadership of the 28 political parties.

At the time of this report, members of the Civil Society Organisations, CSOs, were about to take their turn after which the Commission would meet with the 36 state Resident Electoral Commissioners and that of the Federal Capital Territory.

Asked to confirm if the elections had been postponed as reported by some media organisation, Mr. Idowu said, “Nothing like that (has been) decided by INEC yet.”


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