Jega: Parallel congresses not known to INEC

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Chairman of the Independent National Electoral
Commission, Prof. Attahiru Jega, on Monday in Abuja said
the commission took no cognisance of any parallel
congresses and primaries as it prepares for the conduct of
the 2015 general elections.
The INEC boss said this in reaction to enquiries by The
PUNCH on what the commission had been doing with the
list of candidates who emerged from parallel congresses.
Chief Press Secretary to the INEC chairman, Mr. Kayode
Idowu, told our correspondent that the commission did not
recognise dual or multiple leaderships of political parties.
He said, “Parallel congresses or primaries are unknown in
INEC; in essence, the commission does not monitor two
congresses or primaries at the same time and does not deal
with multiple leaderships. The commission has no
knowledge of parallel congresses or primaries because
INEC deals with the leadership of political parties of which it
has a record.
“Every party is supposed to file a record of their leadership
with INEC and the commission has that record and deals
with it. The commission does not deal with multiple
leaderships at the same time. INEC does not deal with any
party leadership whose record it does not have.
“If that leadership conducts a congress or primary, INEC
does not have any official knowledge of that; in any case,
the law requires that the leadership of the party, as
constituted officially, should file nominations and that is
why the commission says the national chairman and
national secretary of the party, as known, must endorse the
nominations.
“In the states, we also have their records. Until that
leadership changes through the normal procedures, we will
deal with that leadership.
“The only exemption is if the court gives an order that tells
the commission not to accept the nominations by the
leadership of the party; the commission is law-abiding and
will be guided by the court order. There have been court
orders like that and the commission has obliged by
following the due processes accordingly.”

Punch

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