Seven political parties have submitted lists of candidates for the March 28, 2020 local government council elections in Cross River State, south-south Nigeria.
Dr. Mike Ushie, the chairman of the Cross River State Independent Electoral Commission, CROSIEC, disclosed this in an interview with journalists in Calabar, the capital city.
Ushie noted that prior to the delisting of some political parties by Nigeria’s Independent Electoral Commission, eleven willingly submitted lists of candidates to the commission.
He stated, “we had eleven political parties participating in this election before the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, delisted some political parties. But, after some were delisted, we now have only seven political parties taking part in this election”
“These parties include the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, the All Progressives Congress, APC, the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, Labour Party, LP, New Nigeria Peoples Party, NNPP, Social Democratic Party, SDP, and Young Progressive Party, YPP,” Ushie enumerated.
On the preparedness to conduct the election come March 28, the CROSIEC boss affirmed that the commission was on course as meetings were ongoing with stakeholders.
According to him, “we are on course; we had issued a timetable and have been following the items one after the other. We have not skipped anything nor deviated from the timetable. It is an indication that the election would hold and the March 28 date for the election is feasible”.
“We have really commenced a lot of activities preparatory to that exercise. We have held meetings with political parties, stakeholders and went ahead to advertise for ad hoc staff, which has ended. We are currently on nominations after which we will be screening the candidates. So, we are on course,” Ushie affirmed.
He further disclosed that the commission had commenced the procurement of electoral materials as well as received a copy of the voters register from INEC.
“We have also commenced the procurement of electoral materials and INEC has graciously approved and issued us the voters register. CROSIEC does not have its own register. INEC issued us the voters register, which is what we are going to use for the election,” he said.
On the submission of two different lists from APC, the CROSIEC Chairman said that the commission has advised the party to “put their house in order as it is an internal matter or face the consequences. Besides, our legal team is working on the courts document submitted by the two groups and the commission will take a decision once our legal team concludes its assignment”.
Cross River State is attempting to conduct local government council election three years after the last tenure expired in December 2016.