INEC rolls out new election dates

THE PUNCH Newspaper

The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Maurice Iwu, on Tuesday announced a provisional timetable for the 2011 polls with a likelihood of election starting on January 8, 2011 or April 9, 2011.

Iwu announced the timetable at a National Conference for Stakeholders in the electoral process in Abuja.

The chairman said the timetable was provisional awaiting the final approval of the electoral reforms from the National Assembly, the News Agency of Nigeria reports.

According to Iwu, the National Assembly elections will hold on January 8, 2011; governorship and state assembly polls on January 15, while the presidential election will hold on January 22, 2011.

Iwu said the second option was to retain the old order of having National Assembly elections on April 9, governorship and state assembly polls on April 16 while presidential election would hold on April 23, 2011.

He argued that both options were in line with both the recommendations of the Justice Muhammadu Uwais-Electoral Reform Report and the existing electoral laws.

The INEC boss said that the provisional timetable would start with the review of register of voters between April 26 and July 30, 2010, while the parties were expected to conduct their respective primaries between May 2 and July 31, 2010.

The chairman said that issuance of notice of election would be made public on August 2, 2010 while collection of forms from the commission by political parties would start from August 23, 2010 to September 14, 2010.

He said the last day for submission of nomination forms to the commission for National Assembly poll would be September 20, 2010, governorship and state assembly elections; September 27, 2010 while presidential poll would be on October 4, 2010.

According to Iwu, the last day for publication of particulars of candidates for the National Assembly elections will be September 27.

He added that the governorship/state assembly elections would be on October 4, and presidential election on October 11.

Iwu said the display of the voter register for purposes of claims and objections would be between October 18 and October 30, 2010, while public campaign by political parties would start on October 9, 2010.

Other highlights of the timetable include last day for change/substitution of candidates by political parties between November 4 and November 18, 2010 in line with section 34 and 36(2) of the Electoral Act.


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