• Akpabio makes final list
• Lists for state elections to be published October 4
The Independent National Electoral Commission has released the final lists for the 2023 presidential and National Assembly elections.
This was contained in a press release signed by the commission’s National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, on Tuesday.
The publication of the list, which followed the political parties’ conduct of primaries and completion of the nomination exercise, was pursuant to “section 32(1) of the Electoral Act 2022 and item 8 of the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the 2023 General Election.”
According to the commission, 18 political parties field presidential candidates and their running mates, while for legislative elections, 1,101 candidates are vying for 109 Senatorial seats and 3,122 candidates for Federal Constituencies, that is, House of Representatives seats.
A total of 4,223 candidates contesting for 469 legislative positions.
The commission added that 3,875 of the candidates are male, made up of 35 for Presidential and Vice Presidential, 1,008 for Senate and 2,832 for House of Representatives, while 381 females, comprising one for Presidential, 92 for Senate, and 288 for House of Representatives are contesting the elections.
INEC also noted that there are 11 Persons with Disability in the race.
The statement partly read, “At its regular weekly meeting held today Tuesday 20th September 2022, the Commission approved the final list of candidates for national elections (Presidential, Senatorial and Federal Constituencies) pursuant to section 32(1) of the Electoral Act 2022 and item 8 of the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the 2023 General Election.
“The publication of the full names and addresses of all nominated candidates follows the political parties’ conduct of primaries and completion of the nomination exercise.”
Speaking on the party and gender distributions of the candidates, the statement said, “In summary, all the 18 political parties have fielded candidates and their running mates for the Presidential election. For legislative elections, 1,101 candidates are vying for 109 Senatorial seats and 3,122 candidates for Federal Constituencies i.e. House of Representatives seats, making a total of 4,223 candidates contesting for 469 legislative positions.
“In terms of gender distribution, 3,875 candidates are male, made up of 35 for Presidential and Vice Presidential, 1,008 for Senate and 2,832 for House of Representatives.
“Similarly, 381 females comprising 1 for Presidential, 92 for Senate, and 288 for House of Representatives are contesting. There are also 11 Persons with Disability (PWDs) in the race.”
The released list for Akwa Ibom Federal Constituencies contains the name of the state’s ex-Governor, Godswill Akpabio, under as the All Progressives Congress’ Senatorial candidate for Akwa Ibom North West.
The inclusion of Akpabio on INEC’s final list signals an end to the controversy surrounding his nomination by its party.
The commission said, “Nigerians may recall that at end of the process, the personal particulars of all nominated candidates were displayed in their constituencies nationwide as provided by section 29(3) of the Electoral Act.
“Subsequently, validly nominated candidates had the opportunity to voluntarily withdraw their candidature by notice in writing and personally deliver such notice to the political party that nominated them for the election.
“Thereafter, political parties substituted such candidates under section 31 of the Electoral Act for which the last day was 15th July 2022 for national elections and 12th August 2022 for State elections as clearly provided in item 6 of the Commission’s Timetable and Schedule of Activities.
“Thereafter, no withdrawal or substitution of candidates is allowed except in the event of death as provided in section 34(1) of the Electoral Act or pursuant to an order of a Court of competent jurisdiction.
“The list published today contains the names of candidates validly nominated for national elections at the close of party primaries and the period earmarked for withdrawal and substitution of candidates.”
The commission added, “We note the fact that not all the political parties conducted primaries in all the constituencies, submitted the particulars of candidates that emerged from valid primaries or substituted their candidates after fresh primaries within 14 days as provided in section 33 of the Electoral Act. This has led to numerous litigations, some of which are ongoing.
“Where the Commission was served with Court orders by aggrieved aspirants or candidates before the publication of this list, these have been indicated under the remark column.”
It is observed that the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, and his contender, Bashir Machina, miss out on the list as no senatorial candidate was listed for the APC in Yobe North.
It is also observed that the expelled presidential candidate of the African Democratic Congress, Dumebi Kachikwu, appears on INEC’s final list as the party’s presidential candidate despite his expulsion from the party last week.
Meanwhile, INEC stated that, “The final list of candidates for State elections (Governorship and State Constituencies) will be published on 4th October 2022 as already indicated on the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the 2023 General Election.”