Ahead of the 2023 national elections, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says it will publish the final list of candidates for Presidential, Senate and House of Representatives on September 20, 2022.
Governorship and State Houses of Assembly candidates will be published on October 4, 2022.
INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, announced this on Thursday while speaking at an event organised by the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) in conjunction with INEC in Abuja.
He said the publication of the final list is in line with Section 32(1) of the Electoral Act, 2022 and the Timetable and Schedule of Activities released by the commission.
According to the INEC Chairman, activities for the 2023 General Elections will enter critical stages this month (September) from the next 19 days onward.
”Campaign in public by political parties will officially commence on Sept. 28 as provided for by Section 94(1) of the Electoral Act, 2022.
”As campaigns commence, we appeal to all political parties and candidates to focus on issue-based campaigns.
“This is the best way to complement our efforts to ensure transparent elections in which only the votes cast by citizens determine the winner.
“The commission welcomes this initiative and as Co-Chairman of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES), there is no doubt that the security agencies also welcome ideas and citizens’ support towards peaceful elections,” Yakubu said.
The Director, CDD, Ms. Idayat Hassan, said the meeting was being held against the background of security challenges plaguing the country, adding that the idea was to start talking about how to deescalate tension and secure the environment such that INEC will be able to assess all parts of the country to conduct a peaceful and legitimate election come 2023.
She said: ”I think one for this election, the security of election materials, the security of personnel, the security of voters are in context and there is actually the problem in INEC assessing all areas.
“We should note that this is not just an INEC problem, this is a stakeholders’ problem, insecurity is already prevailing.
“The challenge we are having is how to do we conduct election against the background of this prevailing insecurity? It behoves on the federal government and other stakeholders to come in.”