We Are Not Aware Of Abubakar Audu’s Death – INEC

Abubakar Audu buried

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, said on Monday that it is not aware of the death of the candidate of the All Progressive Congress, APC, in last Saturday’s governorship election in Kogi State, Abubakar Audu, as the electoral body had not been informed.

The commission said even then that it would apply available legal provisions to deal with the Kogi situation whenever it is officially informed, adding that there were provisions in the country’s laws to address such an occurrence.

INEC’s deputy director of publicity, Nick Dazang, stated this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Abuja on Monday.

“APC has to do proper notification and accompany it with the certificate of death issued by a medical doctor,” Dazang said.

“When something like this happens, the party on which platform the candidate contested will need to notify the commission,” he added.

The INEC director acknowledged that officials of the commission had heard and read about the APC candidate’s death but insisted that the electoral body had to be officially notified.

“Once the Commission is notified, it will look at relevant clauses of the 1999 Constitution as amended, the Electoral Act 2010 as amended and also the Constitution of APC itself.

“All these relevant laws will be looked at with a view to determine what to be done to ensure that whatever is done subsequently is done within the ambit of the law. INEC as a law-abiding body will do everything prescribed by the law,” he stated.

He said also that INEC had a competent legal department headed by a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, as well as “a consortium of Senior Advocates of Nigeria that provide counsel to the commission” and that taking a decision on the matter would not be a problem.






     

     

    Dazang disclosed that the INEC was already preparing for a supplementary election before the news of Audu’s death broke and expressed the hope that the commission would take a position on the matter before the end of the week, noting that the Electoral Act prescribed 14 days for the conduct of supplementary poll.

    Although he would not say if the commission would conduct a supplementary poll or order a fresh one, the INEC spokesman assured that the Kogi situation would not affect that of Bayelsa State governorship election slated for December 5

    “Assuming the two states’ elections coincide, the Commission has the resource to conduct them,” he stated.

    Audu died on Saturday after the governorship election in which he was leading in announced results was cancelled. He was buried on Monday according to Muslim tradition.

     

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