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INEC To Decide On Election Dates Saturday

By Ezeocha Nzeh, Abuja and Njadvara Musa, Maiduguri
06 February 2015   |   9:24 pm
• After Meeting With Stakeholders FOLLOWING directives from the National Council of State after its meeting on Thursday in Abuja that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) should consult widely with the security and other stakeholders, there were indications Friday that the commission may take a definite position on the dates for the election.   …

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• After Meeting With Stakeholders

FOLLOWING directives from the National Council of State after its meeting on Thursday in Abuja that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) should consult widely with the security and other stakeholders, there were indications Friday that the commission may take a definite position on the dates for the election.

   INEC, which has since commenced wide consultations on the matter, has met with the heads of security agencies, who were also at the Council of State meeting to brief the former heads of state on the situation on the ground.

  The commission, in a statement issued Friday by Mr Kayode Idowu, the Chief Press Secretary (CPS) to INEC Chairman, Prof Attahiru Jega, said it will meet today with the chairmen and secretaries of all the 28 registered political parties to look into the commission’s level of preparedness and take a final decision on whether it would go ahead with next Saturday’s presidential election or not.

  Idowu revealed that Jega would address a press conference and tell the country the final position of the commission regarding the date for the election.

  “On Thursday, February 5, 2015, Jega was invited to brief the National Council of States (NCS) on the preparedness of INEC to conduct the 2015 general elections. 

  “He made a presentation, titled ‘Preparations for the 2015 General Elections: Progress Report.’ The National Security Adviser (NSA) and Armed Services Chiefs also briefed the Council on the current security situation.

   “As a follow-up to that meeting, the commission has scheduled a consultative meeting with chairmen and secretaries of all registered political parties, as well as a meeting with the Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) on Saturday, February 7, 2015.

  “Thereafter, the commission will address a press conference to brief the nation on its decision with regards to whether or not the general elections will hold as currently scheduled,” Idowu said in the statement.

     Meanwhile, addressing journalists yesterday in Maiduguri at the Government House on the preparedness of INEC and other political parties for the elections, Borno State Vice Chairman of Buhari Campaign Organisation and Director General of Kashim Shettima Campaign Organisation (KSCOG), Alhaji Babakura Shettima said the electorate in Borno would fully participate in the elections, as all eligible youths and women of various groups have collected their PVCs to vote for their leaders.

   “The Buhari and Shettima campaign organisations are fully prepared for this month’s elections. Our youths and women in Borno that are eligible to vote their leaders with their PVCs at the national and state levels are fully prepared, including the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) at 12 resettlement camps in Maiduguri metropolis.

  “All of us are ready with our cards to vote for Buhari and Shettima on the platform of All Progressive Congress (APC), and by God’s grace, our candidates will win the elections,” he said, adding that there is “no reason” to postpone or shift the elections.

    On calls for and possible shift of dates, Shettima said: “Jega yesterday declared to the whole world that this month’s elections will hold, as 44 million PVCs and other election materials were already being distributed by the commission to all the 36 states, including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). So, why should the elections be postponed or shifted?”