Too Young To Run: INEC to disqualify Bayelsa, Kogi candidates


Some governorship and deputy-governorship candidates in the November 16 elections in Bayelsa and Kogi States are facing disqualification for being below the age requirement of 35.

National Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Festus Okoye, says it will soon notify the concerned parties and consider further action.

In a statement on Thursday, Okoye said INEC will publish the personal particulars of candidates nominated by political parties for the elections.

INEC says the publication is in accordance with the Electoral Act, and in line with the timetable and schedule of activities for the governorship exercise.

Okoye said, “The personal particulars of the nominees will be published on the notice boards of our offices in Yenagoa and Lokoja. As required by law, the commission monitored the primaries of the political parties and the list of candidates who emerged has since been published on our 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 and 49 for Kogi, respectively, submitted the list of candidates and their personal particulars at the close of nomination at 6pm on Monday, September 9, 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.”

The INEC commissioner said, out of the 101 nominees for the two states, 91 were male, representing 90 per cent, while 10 were female, representing 10 per cent of all the nominees.

According to him, of the 52 nominees for Bayelsa, six are female and 46 are male, while in Kogi State, four are female and 45 are male.

He added, “The commission 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 commission will notify the concerned parties soon and subsequently consider further action.

“As we continue to prepare for the Bayelsa and Kogi governorship elections scheduled for Saturday, November 16, 2019, the commission once more reminds the political parties of the timelines in the timetable and schedule of activities and requests strict compliance with them.”

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