INEC Boss Maintains Position On 2019 Election Timetable

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Despite an amendment to the Electoral Act by the National Assembly which prescribes that the Presidential election comes last, the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof Mahmood Yakubu has insisted that the body would follow its own timetable for the 2019 election released late 2017.

In the timetable released by INEC, the presidential and National Assembly elections are fixed for February 16, 2019 and the gubernatorial, House of Assembly and area council elections are scheduled for March 2, 2019.

However, the National Assembly transmitted an amendment to the Electoral Act to the president.

In the amendment which has yet to be assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari, the national assembly election is scheduled first and presidential election is scheduled last.

But speaking in a media parley in Abuja on Monday, the INEC boss insisted that the commission would continue with its own scheduled timetable until the amendment gains assent.

He maintained that the commission would not deal in speculation.

Speaking on whether the commission would be heading to court, he said the matter would be decided when necessary.

Yakubu said, “There are many ‘ifs’ but here, we deal with certainty . As far as the commission is concerned, there is no legal lacuna at the moment. What we have done is on the basis of the existing law and nothing has changed.

“If the bill is assented to, we will look at the provisions and inform Nigerians on the next step. But as far as the commission is concerned at the moment, we are operating under the existing law and we have issued a timetable for the activities accordingly.

“If something happens tomorrow, we will examine it and proceed accordingly.”

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