Tension brews as INEC removes PDP from ballots in Plateau rerun elections

Barely 48 hours to the conduct of Plateau North senatorial district and Bassa-Jos North Federal Constituency rerun elections slated for Saturday 3rd February 2024, tension and apprehension brewed as the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) excluded Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) from participation.

The INEC commissioner in charge of North Central, Muhammad Haruna, made this known to newsmen on Thursday after receiving the sensitive materials for the elections from the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, zonal branch Jos.

He said the security will do all that is possible to ensure there is peace, and the police, and other security agencies will do all that is possible to ensure that materials are secured from bring tampered with and vandalised.

“We had a meeting with political parties right before now and told them in return disqualified candidate and political party cannot participate, this is an established law, the Supreme Court has ruled about it in Labour versus INEC several years ago and PDP was a beneficiary of this several years ago.

“INEC is a law-abiding institution, we never flout the law. We call a meeting of all political parties, if PDP went to court and the federal high court declined jurisdiction what that simply means is that the ruling by the Court of Appeal subsists and we have to obey the court, our hands are tight by the court in this regard. What the court said is what we are going to do whether it is right or wrong unless it is set aside.

Daily Champion reports that the Appeal Court in Abuja under Honourable Justice Williams-Dawodu panel sometimes on 22 October 2023, nullified the elections of former Senate minority leader, Simon Mwadkwon and member representing Jos North-Bassa Federal Constituency, Musa Agah on the ground that PDP doesn’t have a valid in Plateau.

The Appellate Court also directed INEC to conduct rerun elections within 90 days and all political parties should participate.

However, the Inter Party Advisory Council (IPAC) Plateau state have vowed that no political party will participate the rerun elections scheduled for 3rd February,2023, except all parties were included non the ballot.

Abubakar Dogara, IPAC chairman Plateau State who spoke with newsmen after inspection of sensitive election materials revealed they held meeting with INEC on the 9th January, 2024, in which INEC promised to serve with a list of parties that would participate the elections but failed to do so.

According to him, “The position of the IPAC is that it is either PDP participated in the election or all parties will not take part because the Appeal Court said all political parties should participate in the election.

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