The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Thursday announced the de-registration of 74 political parties.
According to the Chairman of the commission, Mahmood Yakubu, who briefed journalists at the Commission’s headquarters, Abuja, the parties were de-registered for failing to satisfy the requirements to operate as contained in the Fourth Alteration to the Constitution.
The Commission also announced the dates for governorship elections in Edo and Ekiti States.
According to Mahmood, “the tenure of the Governors of Edo and Ondo States will end on 12th November 2020 and 24th February 2021 respectively. Pursuant to the provisions of Section 178(2) of the 1999 Constitution and Section 25(8) of the Electoral Act 2010, elections cannot hold earlier than 150 days and not later than 30 days before the expiration of the term of office of an incumbent Governor. Accordingly, the Commission has fixed Saturday 19th September 2020 as the date for the Governorship election in Edo State and Saturday 10th October 2020 for Ondo State.”
Below is the full text of the briefing by the INEC Chairman:
- On behalf of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), I warmly welcome you to this briefing. The purpose is to convey to Nigerians the decision of the Commission on the status of political parties. Similarly, the Commission has fixed the dates for the end-of-tenure Governorship elections in Edo and Ondo States as well as bye-elections to fill vacancies in some States of the Federation.
Status of Political Parties
- You will recall that prior to the 2019 general election, Nigeria had 91 political parties. One more party was registered by court order after the election, making a total of 92 political parties. The 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) vests in INEC the power to register and regulate the activities of political parties. You will also recall that in 2018, the Constitution was amended. In addition to the extant provision for the registration of political parties, the Fourth Alteration to the Constitution (Section 225A) empowers the Commission to deregister political parties.
- Prior to the Fourth Alteration, the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) had provided for the deregistration of political parties. Based on this provision, the Commission, between 2011 and 2013, deregistered 39 political parties. However, several of the parties challenged the power of INEC to deregister them, particularly on the ground that the Electoral Act is inferior to the Constitution and that deregistration infringed their fundamental rights under the same Constitution. Subsequently, the courts ordered the Commission to reinstate the parties. It was for this reason that the National Assembly amended the Constitution to empower the Commission to deregister political parties on the following grounds:
Breach of any of the requirements for registration as a political party.
Failure to win at least 25% of the votes cast in one State of the Federation in a Presidential election or 25% of the votes cast in one Local Government Area of a State in a Governorship election.
Failure to win at least one ward in a Chairmanship election, one seat in the National or State Assembly election or one seat in a Councillorship election.
- In order to implement the provision of the Fourth Alteration to the Constitution, the Commission carried out an assessment of political parties to determine compliance with the requirements for their registration. Similarly, following the conclusion of the 2019 general election, including court-ordered re-run elections arising from litigations, the Commission was able to determine the performance of political parties in the elections. In addition, they were also assessed on the basis of their performance in the Area Council elections in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) which coincided with the 2019 general election. It should be noted that the FCT is the only part of the country where INEC is empowered by the Constitution to conduct Local Government elections.
- Consequently, the Commission has determined that sixteen (16) political parties have fulfilled the requirements for existence based on Section 225A of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) as follows:
NAME OF PARTY
Accord Party (A)
African Action Congress (AAC)
African Democratic Congress
African Democratic Party ADP
All Progressives Congress APC
All Progressives Grand Alliance APGA
Allied Peoples Movement APM
Labour Party LP
New Nigeria Peoples Party NNPP
National Rescue Movement NRM
Peoples Democratic Party PDP
Peoples Redemption Party PRP
Social Democratic Party SDP
Young Progressive Party YPP
Zenith Labour Party ZLP
- Seventy-five (75) political parties did not satisfy the requirements of the Fourth Alteration to the Constitution. However, one of the political parties, the Action Peoples Party (APP), filed a suit in court and obtained an order restraining the Commission from deregistering it. Consequently, the party remains registered pending the determination of the case by the court.
- The new political party, Boot Party (BP), registered by court order after the 2019 general election will also continue to exist.
- Accordingly, seventy-four (74) political parties are hereby deregistered. With this development, Nigeria now has eighteen (18) registered political parties. The list of the parties will be shared with you at this briefing and will also be available on our website and social media platforms shortly.
Edo and Ondo Governorship Elections
- The tenure of the Governors of Edo and Ondo States will end on 12th November 2020 and 24th February 2021 respectively. Pursuant to the provisions of Section 178(2) of the 1999 Constitution and Section 25(8) of the Electoral Act 2010, elections cannot hold earlier than 150 days and not later than 30 days before the expiration of the term of office of an incumbent Governor. Accordingly, the Commission has fixed Saturday 19th September 2020 as the date for the Governorship election in Edo State and Saturday 10th October 2020 for Ondo State. Detailed Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the two elections will be published on our website and social media platforms shortly.
- Similarly, the Commission is conducting bye-elections in three (3) constituencies as a result of the deaths of some serving members of the National and State Assemblies. The Honourable Speaker of the House of Representatives has declared vacancy in Magama/Rijau Federal Constituency of Niger State. Similarly, the Honourable Speaker of the Kwara State House of Assembly has declared a vacancy in Patigi State Constituency while the Speaker of the Sokoto State House of Assembly has declared the Kebbe State Constituency vacant. These bye-elections will hold simultaneously in the three (3) States of the Federation on Saturday 14th March 2020. Again, the detailed Timetable and Schedule of Activities will be published on our website and social media platforms shortly.
- On this note, let me reiterate the resolve the Commission to stand firm against acts capable of disrupting the elections. As we are all aware, election is a process. However, the process does not begin and end with Election Day activities. The conduct of party primaries, nomination of candidates, electioneering campaigns and the submission of the list of polling agents are also essential to the electoral process. Above all, good behaviour by all officials and actors involved is crucial for success. I wish to remind all parties and candidates that violence during party primaries and electioneering campaigns, the snatching of election materials or the deployment of thugs against INEC officials, observers, the media and unarmed security personnel at polling units are acts punishable under our electoral laws. Already, the political atmosphere in a particular State is charged. No one should regard the release of the Timetable for the elections as a signal to further escalate tension or a call to commence the recruitment of goons and arming of thugs and hoodlums.
- I thank you all and God bless.
LIST OF DE-REGISTERED POLITICAL PARTIES
NAME OF PARTY
ADVANCED ALLIED PARTY AAP
ALL BLENDING PARTY ABP
ADVANCED CONGRESS OF DEMOCRATS ACD
ALLIED CONGRESS PARTY OF NIGERIA ACPN
ALLIANCE FOR DEMOCRACY AD
ALL GRASSROOTS ALLIANCE AGA
ALL GRAND ALLIANCE PARTY AGAP
ADVANCED NIGERIA DEMOCRATIC PARTY ANDP
ALLIANCE FOR NEW NIGERIA ANN
ALLIANCE NATIONAL PARTY ANP
ABUNDANT NIGERIA RENEWAL PARTY ANRP
AFRICAN PEOPLES ALLIANCE APA
ADVANCED PEOPLES DEMOCRATIC ALLIANCE APDA
ALTERNATIVE PARTY OF NIGERIA APN
ALLIANCE OF SOCIAL DEMOCRATS ASD
ALLIANCE FOR A UNITED NIGERIA AUN
BETTER NIGERIA PROGRESSIVE PARTY BNPP
CHANGE ADVOCACY PARTY CAP
COALITION FOR CHANGE C4C
CHANGE NIGERIA PARTY CNP
CONGRESS OF PATRIOTS COP
DEMOCRATIC ALTERNATIVE DA
DEMOCRATIC PEOPLES CONGRESS DPC
DEMOCRATIC PEOPLES PARTY DPP
FRESH DEMOCRATIC PARTY FRESH
FREEDOM AND JUSTICE PARTY FJP
GRASSROOTS DEVELOPMENT PARTY OF NIGERIA GDPN
GREEN PARTY OF NIGERIA GPN
HOPE DEMOCRATIC PARTY HDP
INDEPENDENT DEMOCRATS ID
JUSTICE MUST PREVAIL PARTY JMPP
KOWA PARTY KP
LIBERATION MOVEMENT LM
LEGACY PARTY OF NIGERIA LPN
MASS ACTION JOINT ALLIANCE MAJA
MODERN DEMOCRATIC PARTY MDP
MASSES MOVEMENT OF NIGERIA MMN
MEGA PARTY OF NIGERIA MPN
MOVEMENT FOR THE RESTORATION AND DEFENCE OF DEMOCRACY MRDD
NATIONAL ACTION COUNCIL NAC
NIGERIA COMMUNITY MOVEMENT PARTY NCMP
NATIONAL CONSCIENCE PARTY NCP
NIGERIA DEMOCRATIC CONGRESS PARTY NDCP
NATIONAL DEMOCRATIC LIBERTY PARTY NDLP
NIGERIA ELEMENTS PROGRESSIVE PARTY NEPP
NIGERIA FOR DEMOCRACY NFD
NEW GENERATION PARTY OF NIGERIA NGP
NATIONAL INTEREST PARTY NIP
NIGERIA PEOPLES CONGRESS NPC
NEW PROGRESSIVE MOVEMENT NPM
NATIONAL UNITY PARTY NUP
PEOPLES COALITION PARTY PCP
PEOPLES FOR DEMOCRATIC CHANGE PDC
PEOPLES DEMOCRATIC MOVEMENT PDM
PROGRESSIVE PEOPLES ALLIANCE PPA
PROVIDENCE PEOPLES CONGRESS PPC
PEOPLES PARTY OF NIGERIA PPN
PEOPLES PROGRESSIVE PARTY PPP
PEOPLES TRUST PT
REFORM AND ADVANCEMENT PARTY RAP
RE-BUILD NIGERIA PARTY RBNP
RESTORATION PARTY OF NIGERIA RP
SAVE NIGERIA CONGRESS SNC
SUSTAINABLE NATIONAL PARTY SNP
SOCIALIST PARTY OF NIGERIA SPN
UNITED DEMOCRATIC PARTY UDP
UNITED PATRIOTS UP
UNITED PEOPLES CONGRESS UPC
UNITY PARTY OF NIGERIA UPN
UNITED PROGRESSIVE PARTY UPP
WE THE PEOPLE NIGERIA WTPN
YOUNG DEMOCRATIC PARTY YDP
YES ELECTORATES SOLIDARITY YES
YOUTH PARTY YP