The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has ruled out the possibility of implementing all the provisions of the amended Electoral Act, if given Presidential assent, particularly as they relate to electronic voting.
“We have gone really far with this. If tomorrow the bill is assented to, there are provisions that we can immediately implement but there are provisions that we cannot implement simply because of time. For instance, full blown electronic voting. It is impossible within the time-frame available which is 112 days.
“We have been working closely with the National Assembly and many of the new provisions passed in the bill were actually based on our recommendations. We prepared ourselves in such a way that in case some of the provisions become law, we would have no difficulty in implementing them,” said INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu.
He said only 79 out of the 89 political parties participating in the elections had presidential candidates. Nigeria currently has 91 registered political parties.
Prof. Yakubu who announced this while giving an update on the nationwide ongoing publication of details of candidates for the next general elections, noted that while 1,803 candidates would vie for the 109 seats in the Senate, 4, 548 would be vying for the 360 House of Representatives seats.
According to him, the commission would between 6th and 12th November, publish the National Register of Voters nationwide to allow Nigerians file claims and objections in line with Section 20 of the Electoral Act as amended.