2023 GOVERNORSHIP AND
STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY ELECTIONS
…PDP releases timetable for fresh governorship primary in Abia
The National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has released the timetable for a fresh governorship primary in Abia State.
Dele Ologunagba, the spokesperson of the PDP, disclosed this in a statement on Friday.
Mr Ologunagba said the decision of the NWC to hold the fresh primary followed the death of the party’s governorship candidate in Abia State, Uchenna Ikonne.
Mr Ikonne, a professor and former vice chancellor of the Abia State University Uturu, passed away on Wednesday, 25 January, around 4 a.m. at the National Hospital Abuja, according to a statement from his first son, Uche-Ikonne Chikezie, on behalf of the family.
The PDP spokesperson noted that the decision was in line with Section 33 of the 2022 Electoral Act.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was notified on Friday about the primary, according to the statement.
The sale of forms for the primary will last between 27 and 31 January and the last day for submission of purchased forms will be Wednesday 1 February.
Aspirants will be screened the following day, 2 February while the screening appeal was slated for 3 February, the time-table showed.
The primary will be held on Saturday 4 February at Umuahia Township Stadium, the party said.
“Fresh aspirants are permitted to participate in the current exercise alongside those who contested in the earlier primary,” Mr Ologunagba, the party spokesperson, said.
He said the party leaders, members and supporters should be guided by the arrangement.
The position of the law
The PDP must hold a fresh primary to replace its deceased governorship candidate within 14 days from the death of the candidate, according to Section 33 (1) of the 2022 Electoral Act.
The law said political parties cannot change their candidates except in the event of death or withdrawal of such candidates.
“…in the case of such withdrawal or death of a candidate, the political party affected shall, within 14 days of the occurrence of the event, hold a fresh primary election to produce and submit a fresh candidate to the commission (INEC) for the election concerned,” the section of the law stated.
The implication of this section is that the PDP in Abia State must hold a fresh primary election on or before 8 February to produce Mr Ikonne’s replacement or face the possibility of not fielding a governorship candidate in the 11 March election in the state.
The law was silent on the fate of a running mate, implying that a joint ticket is deemed terminated in the event of a flagbearer’s death before the election.
However, a running mate for governorship, presidential and Federal Capital Territory Council Area election, according to Section 34 (3) (a & b) of the law, is only allowed to replace a substantive candidate in the event that the substantive candidate died after the commencement of the poll and before the announcement of the final result as well as declaration of a winner.
Contents provided and/or opinions expressed here do not reflect the opinions of The Pacesetter Frontier Magazine or any employee thereof.
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