No extension! INEC warns, directs parties to strictly adhere to schedule of activities for 2023 elections


*Reminds 18 political parties that they have one month to conclude primaries

*Urges them to ensure rancour-free, transparent exercise

*Assures that it will continue to work with parties in line with Constitution, Electoral Act

By Yomi Kareem

Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has tasked political parties to conduct their primaries within the time table and schedule of activities for the 2023 general elections and in compliance with the provisions of the Electoral Act, stressing that the timetable is firm and fixed.

The National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Barr Festus Okoye in a statement yesterday said in compliance with Section 82(1) of the Electoral Act 2022, all the 18 political parties have served the required notices indicating the dates for their conventions, congresses, and primaries for the purpose of nominating candidates for various elective offices as specified in the Constitution and the Electoral Act.

Okoye observed that some of the political parties have already commenced the process for which the Commission has deployed staff personnel to monitor the exercise as required by law.

This is how Okoye put it in his statement: “Given the importance of the exercise to the emergence of candidates for the various elective positions for the 2023 general election, it is imperative to remind political parties that they have one month from today to conclude their primaries.

“The deadline remains Friday 3rd June 2022. While urging the parties to ensure rancour-free and transparent exercise, the Commission reiterates that the deadline is firm and fixed.”

Speaking further, national commissioner maintained that the nominations for Presidential and National Assembly elections shall be submitted through the INEC web portal from June 10 to 17, 2022 while Governorship and State Houses of Assembly nominations shall be submitted between July 1 and 15, 2022.

The Commission further reminded political parties that they must submit to the INEC, the list of candidates who must have emerged from valid primaries.

The electoral umpire added that it would continue to work with political parties to ensure fidelity to the Constitution, the Electoral Act and the timelines for all the activities contained in the time table and schedule of activities for the 2023 general elections.

It will be recalled that on February 26, this year, the Commission released the time table and schedule of activities for the 2023 general elections where it provided for parties to conduct their primaries for the nomination of candidates from April 4 to June 3, 2022.