From Yakubu Mustapha, Minna
The Independent National Electoral Commission in Niger State has announced its preparedness to conduct a rerun election of Agwara local government state assembly slated for 25th January, 2020 sequel to the court annulment of the 2019 election in the state.
The Resident Electoral Commissioner REC, Prof. Sam Egwu made this known yesterday at a general stakeholders meeting in preparation for the conduct of the bye election as directed by its headquarter in Abuja.
He explained that the election as conducted in 2019 and declaration of the APC candidate as the winner which was challenge at the tribunal who agreed with the complainant submission accorded by appellant court who ascended the judgment hence the nullification of the election.
Egwu informed that the first declared candidate and his party has forfeited their rights to participate in the rerun haven failed to present a credible and properly screened candidate in the first instance which was the All Progressive Congress APC and Ahmed Abdullahi.
REC further said that only INEC staff would be used for the election assuring of overcoming logistics challenges however called for all stakeholders support for the conduct of free, fair, credible and acceptable upcoming bye election.
He said that state INEC was yet to received formal transmission of vacancy for the seat of late Magama/Rijau federal constituency who died sometimes ago hence to conduct bye election after ninety days.
In his remarks, the INEC state HOD election operations, Mohammad Yusuf stated that Agwara has 36,411 registered voters, 56 polling units, 65 voting points, 10 RS while 279 ad hoc staff to be used from INEC office.
He declared that APC will not participate in the rerun out of the 13 political parties that participated in the 2019 election having list their rights however lamented over non network service for easy communication in about 4 wards of that council, noted that only six parties recorded votes in the last election.
The state PDP chairman, Tan KO Beji charged on INEC on doing the right thing or to be again challenged in the court of law, however expressed hope for using INEC staff who were more experienced in the conduct of elections, charged for a transparency in the forthcoming election.
In same vein, the stakeholders at the meeting resolved to support the electoral body for a peaceful, free, fair and credible election in Agwara local government slated for 25th January, 2020.