Prof Mahmood Yakubu, Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has fixed early weeks of February, 2024 for the conduct of rerun elections in some 34 constituencies ordered by the courts following successful litigations in 2023 general elections.
The INEC chairman who met leaders of political parties during an Extraordinary meeting in Abuja also disclosed that the commission will simultaneously conduct bye -elections in constituencies where vacancies have been declared by relevant authorities due to the death or resignation of members of the National and State Houses of Assembly.
For the bye elections, he notified the political parties to get ready to conduct primaries in the affected constitutes , promising to release details soon.
“The Commission intends to combine and conduct the two categories of elections on the same day, the details of which will be discussed at this meeting. As you are aware, re-run elections only involve the parties and candidates that participated in the general election unless a party wishes to replace a deceased candidate. However, bye-elections are fresh elections. Consequently, political parties must conduct fresh primaries within the limited period of time provided by law.”
For the rerun elections, he said that so far the Election Petition Appeal Tribunals have ordered the Commission to conduct re-run elections in 34 constituencies made up of one Senatorial District, 11 Federal Constituencies and 22 State Assembly constituencies.
“However, the 34 constituencies constitute 2.8% of the 1,191 petitions filed by litigants. Significantly, out of the 34 re-run elections, it is only in three cases that the Commission was ordered to conduct elections in the entire constituencies. In the other 31 constituencies, elections are to be held in a few polling units.
“The Commission will meet to review preparations and announce a definite date, including the detailed Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the elections. Full delimitation details, including locations, number of Polling Units, registered voters and Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVCs) collected in each constituency will be uploaded to our website for public information.” he said.