The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has rejected claims that it had on Sunday released a final list of candidates for the general elections in 2023.
In a statement released on Monday in Abuja by Mr. Festus Okoye, National Commissioner and Chairman of the Information and Voter Education Committee, the commission claimed that INEC had not released any lists on Sunday.
“The attention of the commission has been drawn to reports widely circulated by a section of the media today, Monday, January 9th that the final list of candidates was released on our website on Sunday, January 8th.
“The commission wishes to state categorically that no new publication of the final list of candidates was released as reported. The public should therefore discountenance the story.’’
Okoye said that for the record, the final list of candidates for the 2023 general elections was published at least, 150 days before the day of the election in compliance with the provision of Sec. 32(1) of the Electoral Act 2022.”
“Accordingly, the final list for presidential and national assembly elections was published on Sept. 20, 2022, while that of governorship and state assembly elections was published two weeks later on October 4th, 2022.
“These are clearly indicated as item eight on the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the 2023 General Elections released by the commission on February 26th, 2022.’’
Okoye said there could not be a final list of candidates with just 46 days to the general elections, except for names published as substitutions for candidates nominated earlier in compliance with the Court Order.
“Moreover, some of the candidates that allegedly made the new “final” list are still in court and the matter is, therefore, sub judice.”
“Political parties, litigants and the public should be guided accordingly,’’ Okoye said. (NAN)