Campaign for the 2019 general elections will commence on August 17, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared yesterday while releasing the sequence for the polls.
Addressing the leadership of the newly registered parties at the certificate presentation ceremony held at the INEC headquarters, the Commission's Chairman, Prof.
Chairman of INEC Professor Mahmood Yakubu who reeled out activities for the elections, from presidential to state and federal capital territory elections said the processes leading to the February 2019 elections, will begin on the 17th of august 2018, with publication notice of elections, conduct of party primaries, including resolution of disputes arising from it and end on 7th October, 2018.
Yakubu said that campaigns by political parties for Presidential and National Assembly elections would commence on November 18 and end on January 14, 2019; while that of governorship and State Houses of Assembly would start on December 1 and end on February 28, 2019.
The commission will on October 25, 2018, publish personal particulars of candidates for presidential and national assembly, while those for governorship and state assembly will be published on November 9, 2018.
According to INEC, notice of election commences on August 17th, 2018, quoting Section 30 (1) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended) which requires not later than 90 days before the election.
"We advised political parties to play by the rule because we will ensure that we deliver free, fair and credible election which is now a minimum benchmark for INEC in any election we conduct", he said.
Presidential and parliamentary elections will be held on February 16, 2019, marking the end of President Muhammadu Buhari's first term. As political parties and candidates canvass the support of the electorate, the Commission wishes to appeal to all and sundry to eschew bitterness and conduct their activities with decorum.
The commission made the announcement on Tuesday while outlining the 2019 general election timetable.
Mr. Yakubu assured Nigerians that the commission was determined to strictly adhere to the timetable and implement it to the letter.
However, after the primaries, campaigns only start formally on November 18, INEC said. Candidates for the governorship and state assembly will also be given same liberty, effective from December 1, 2018.
The 2019 general election is going to be a straight battle between the same rival parties as INEC Chairman, Prof. This is all the more pertinent given the size and population of the country, the terrain, logistical requirements, the increasing number of political parties, security challenges and the number of constituencies for which elections are to be held.
He disclosed that 1,558 constituencies elections made up presidential, 29 governorship elections, out of which seven are staggered would be conducted in 2019.
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