INEC denies substituting AAC candidates



The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said it published the names of the governorship and deputy governorship candidates submitted by the national chairman and secretary of the African Action Congress (AAC), saying it did not substitute them as claimed by the party.

In a statement Monday, National commissioner and chairman Information and Voter Education Committee, Mr Festus Okoye said the clarification became necessary due to accusation by one of the aspirants in the primaries that the commission substituted his name as the rightful governorship candidate of the party.

INEC said another aspirant had also claimed that the commission substituted his deputy governorship candidate, adding that contrary to these assertions, INEC did not substitute the name of any aspirant or candidate.

He added that it is the exclusive preserve of the political parties as represented by the national chairman and national secretary to submit or substitute names of candidates.

According to INEC, the list it published on Friday 31st July 2020, in its state office in Akure and uploaded to its website and social media platforms contained the names of the governorship and deputy governorship candidates submitted by 17 political parties, including the African Action Congress (AAC) at the close of nomination on 28th July 2020.

The commission urged aspirants, candidates and state branches of political parties with issues or challenges relating to their nominated candidates to approach and resolve such issues with the national chairmen and secretaries of their respective political parties.

The statement read, “On Friday 31st July 2020, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) published the Provisional List of Candidates for the Ondo State Governorship Election scheduled for 10th October 2020 in its State Office in Akure and also uploaded same to its website and social media platforms.

“The list contains the names of the Governorship and Deputy Governorship candidates submitted by 17 political parties, including the African Action Congress (AAC) at the close of nomination on 28th July 2020.

“However, one of the aspirants in the primaries of the party accused the commission of substituting his name as the rightful governorship candidate of the party, while another aspirant also claimed that the commission substituted his deputy governorship candidate.

“Contrary to these assertions, INEC did not substitute the name of any aspirant or candidate.

“The commission received only one submission from the AAC through its dedicated online portal for candidate nomination. There was no human interface. The names uploaded on the portal by the political parties were the same names published.

“The commission only receives the names of candidates and running mates from the National Headquarters of Political Parties, duly signed by both the National Chairman and National Secretary.

“By the supplementary regulations and guidelines for activities of political parties issued by the Commission on 9th June 2020, the National chairmen and national secretaries of political parties as contained in the commission’s records shall be issued access codes for the electronic submission, withdrawal and substitution of names and particulars of their candidates as elected at party primaries monitored by the commission.

“The political parties shall use the access codes provided by the commission to upload the names and particulars of their candidates based on the prescribed Forms EC9 (formerly EC CF 001) and the appropriate Form EC9 (A) – (G) series (formerly CF 002) as provided on the Commission’s website.

“The Completed forms EC9 and EC9 (A) – (G) series, signed by the National Chairman and National Secretary of the political party, are uploaded to the commission’s prescribed portal along with the relevant covering letter addressed to the chairman of the commission.

“The commission does not deal directly with aspirants, candidates or state branches of political parties in matters relating to the nomination, submission and substitution of candidates of political parties as that is the exclusive preserve of the Political Parties as represented by the National Chairman and National Secretary.

“The Commission duly published the names of the governorship and deputy governorship candidates as submitted by the National Chairman and Secretary of the African Action Congress (AAC).”

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