The party will not be allowed to participate in the governorship, National Assembly and State Assembly elections in Zamfara next year.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has barred the All Progressives Congress (APC) from fielding candidates to contest in the 2019 general elections after failing to conduct primary elections.
The commission had set October 7 as the deadline for parties to conclude their primary elections to elect candidates, but divisions within the state chapter of the APC prevented an INEC-supervised election from taking place for the governorship and legislative positions.
With uncertainty over what the implication of the failure to meet the deadline means for the party, INEC has cleared the air and declared that the party will not be allowed to field candidates at next year’s polls, according to a report by Premium Times.
In a letter signed by INEC’s acting secretary, Okechukwu Ndeche, and addressed to APC’s national chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, the party can no longer conduct any primary elections outside of the originally-stated window and will not be allowed to participate in the governorship, National Assembly and State Assembly elections in Zamfara next year.
The statement read, “You would note from the timetable that the conduct of party primaries is scheduled to take place between 18th August and 7th October 2018.
“Kindly also refer to the last schedule communicated by your party to the commission on the dates of party primaries nationwide, including Zamfara, vide your letter Ref. APC/NHDQ/ INEC/19/18/51 dated 3rd October 2018.
“However, report received from our office in Zamfara State shows that no primaries were conducted by your party in the state, notwithstanding that our officials were fully mobilized and deployed.
“Consequently, based on the provisions of Section 87 and 31 of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended), the commission does not expect that your party will submit names of any candidates from Zamfara State.
“For clarity, our position is that the All Progressives Congress (APC), will not be fielding candidates for the governorship, National Assembly and State Assembly Elections in Zamfara state for the 2019 general elections.”
Zamfara APC crisis
A power tussle between state governor, Abdulaziz Yari, and governorship aspirants of the party led to the divisions that has now harmed the party’s chances at next year’s polls.
While Yari anointed his Commissioner for Finance, Mukhtar Idris, to succeed him in office, other aspirants, led by Senator Kabiru Marafa, were intent on an open election, and accused Yari of imposition.
The electoral panel sent by the party’s national working committee announced that it couldn’t conduct the primary elections as both factions conducted parallel elections.
Despite approaching the end of his second term as governor, Yari will be affected by INEC’s ban as he aspires to run for a seat in the Senate at next year’s election.