With the release of guidelines for primaries by the All Progressives Congress (APC), serving ministers and other appointees of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration have been given four days to resign.
The affected ministers are Mr Rotimi Amaechi (Transportation), Dr Chris Nigige (Labour and Productivity), who have declared to run for President on the platform of APC.
Others nursing governorship ambition are the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Malam Abubakar Malami and Minister of State for Education, Mr Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba.
It is not clear yet if the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, ex-Gov. Godswill Akpabio has shelved his presidential aspiration.
According to the guidelines sighted by Persecondnews, the aspirants have till Saturday, April 30 to resign from their positions as it has fixed its primaries for May with the Presidential convention scheduled for May 30 June 1.
Section 3(i) of the APC Guidelines for the Nomination of Candidates for the 2023 General Elections states; ”No political appointee at any level shall be a voting delegate or be voted for the purpose of the nomination of candidates.
“Any political office holder interested in contesting for an elective office shall leave Office 30 days prior to the date of election or party primary for the office sought.”
Persecondnews recalls that Section 84 (12) of the Electoral Act 2022 (as amended) stipulates that political appointees, including ministers/commissioners and special advisers, must quit their offices to be eligible to participate either as delegates or contestants at the convention of their respective political parties.
“No political appointee at any level shall be voting delegate or be voted for at the Convention or Congress of any political party for the purpose of the nomination of candidates for any election.”
In the states, Governors have enforced compliance with the Electoral Act and the party’s guidelines by asking their appointees who have political ambitions to resign.
Commissioners, Chiefs of Staff and others have been resigning in droves since March.
Meanwhile, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has given all political parties a deadline of June 3 to file in their nominations for the 2023 polls.