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There is only one way Lawan can return to Senate – INEC

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The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has explained the only way Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, could return to the Senate in 2023.

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From INEC’s explanation, Lawan or any individual in his position is left at the mercy of the candidates who have been legally and constitutionally nominated by their political parties.

Although the INEC’s National Commissioner of Information and Voter Education, Festus Okoye, who appeared on Arise TV on Monday, June 20, 2022, said he has not come across the names of candidates submitted by political parties, viral report has it that the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Yobe North Senatorial District has replaced the name of Bashir Machina with that of Lawan.

Okoye said that the Commission monitored and has the reports of all the senatorial and House of Representatives primaries, adding that properly nominated candidates must write to INEC with a sworn affidavit, asking for a fresh primary, which would be conducted within 14 days before a replacement can be made.

He further advised Machina and others whose mandates have been taken from them to approach a well-constituted court of law to seek redress since INEC already has the reports from the primaries.

“I completely agree with you that someone who has not contested party’s primary should not be in a position to be nominated as party’s candidate,” Okoye said.

“But now the Independent National Electoral Commission is not in a position as at now to make a determination in relation to what you’re saying or to make a determination in relation to whose name was submitted by a political party.

“The Commission monitored the primaries of different political parties. Their senatorial and House of Representatives primaries and we have our reports. So if somebody emerged from the party primary and someone else’s name is submitted, it is the duty of that particular individual to utilise Section 285 of the Constitution, Section 84 and 29 of the Electoral Act to seek redress in a constituted court of law.

“Moreover, what the law provides is that at the end of this nomination process, if any of the candidates that have been properly and constitutional nominated withdraws in writing and sworn affidavit that the ‘political party that nominated me must and shall conduct fresh primaries within the period of 14 days and then make such replacement.’

“Then the person must do this through a letter submitted to the political party that nominated him with an affidavit indicating that he or she has voluntarily withdrawn. So that is the state of the law as at today.”

While Senator Lawan, who represented Yobe North, was battling for the APC presidential ticket, Machina was declared the winner of the Yobe North Senatorial District primary election.

Expectedly, Lawan lost the APC presidential ticket to Bola Tinubu, and has been left conflicted about his senatorial seat which is now being contested by other candidates.

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Politics

Cracks in APC as 20 senators plan to defect to PDP, NNPP others

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No fewer than 20 senators are set to dump the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and other political parties.

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The ruling party, which had earlier lost over 10 senators to the opposition parties is troubled by the wave of defection as more lawmakers that lost their return tickets to the National Assembly during the party primaries are set to leave the party.

On Wednesday, June 22, 2022, Senator Dauda Haliru Jika representing Bauchi Central, announced his defection to the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP).

Worried by the wave of defection in the party, the National Chairman of the APC, Abdullahi Adamu, met with the APC senators behind closed doors at the National Assembly complex, Abuja yesterday.

Speaking to journalists after the meeting, Adamu admitted that the APC is worried about the development.

The meeting with the senators was most fruitful. The issue of defection is an unfortunate development when it happens but this is a season where there are all sorts of behaviour in the political space and ours is not an exception.

“In every election year, this kind of thing gives cause for stakeholders to sneeze and Nigeria is not an exception so is the APC, not an exception. I don’t care about what is happening in other parties, my focus is on the APC. But we all know that the occurrence is not only happening in the APC, it’s happening across other political parties too. And because we are the ruling party, our problems are exaggerated before the public.

“There is no responsible leader that would not be worried when he loses one member not to talk of two. At the moment we are faced with the stark reality of our problems. I have committed my colleagues at the National Assembly to face the problem squarely and see the problem as solvable. We are in politics, I don’t know what would happen tomorrow, and nobody does,” he said.

According to Punch, a source in the National Assembly disclosed that not lesser than 20 senators are planning to leave the APC within the next week.

“The party chairman came to have a meeting with the APC senators because he said that they learnt through intelligence that not lesser than 20 more senators were planning to defect to other parties within the next one week.

“The chairman asked each of the aggrieved senators to lay bare their grievances which we all did one after the other. Having heard our problems, the chairman instructed that we put them into writing,” the source said.

The lawmaker said during Adamu’s meeting with them, the party chairman asked the senators to put their complaints into writing and promised to address all issues raised.

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Bala Mohammed meets Nyesom Wike in Port Harcourt [Photos]

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Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed, has held a closed-door meeting with his Rivers State counterpart, Gov. Nyesom Wike.

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The National Vice Chairman of the PDP, South-South Dan Orbih was also part of the meeting.

The meeting with Bala Mohammed came after pictures of the Presidential candidate of the Labour party, Peter Obi meeting with Wike in his country home emerged online.

Obi says his visit to Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State was for the duo to discuss vital national issues.

Earlier today, I visited Port Harcourt, to confer with H.E. @GovWike on vital issues of national interest,” Obi’s tweet, shared alongside photos of him and the Rivers leader, read.

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Peter Obi explains why he visited Wike

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Peter Obi, the Presidential candidate of the Labour Party says he visited Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State to discuss vital issues of national interest with him.

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Obi’s visit to Wike in Port Harcourt on Wednesday, June 22, 2022, sparked a conversation on social media as many believe the meeting was about the forthcoming 2023 elections.

But hours after the meeting, the former governor Anambra took to Twitter to explain the reason he held a meeting with Wike behind closed doors.

“Earlier today, I visited Port Harcourt, to confer with H.E. @GovWike on vital issues of national interest,” Obi tweeted.

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