- A former senator of the eighth Senate's request to withdraw from senatorial rerun has been rejected by INEC
- INEC said it was already too late for Godswill Akpabio who is now a minister to be replaced by another candidate in the race
- The electoral body said the rerun is to be conducted amongst the same political parties and candidates who participated in the nullified elections
Nigeria's electoral body, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has rejected the withdrawal from the senatorial rerun by the minister of the Niger Delta, Senator Godswill Akpabio.
The rerun for Akwa Ibom North West senatorial district is scheduled to take place on Saturday, January 25.
Premium Times reports that a letter by the electoral body to the All Progressives Congress (APC) which is Akpabio's party in December said it was already too later for the former senator who is now a minister to be replaced by another candidate in the race.
Noting that the last day for withdrawal or substitution of candidates for the 2019 National Assembly election had elapsed said the rerun is to be conducted amongst the same political parties and candidates who participated in the nullified elections.
INEC said in its letter: “Your letter dated 10 December 2019 wherein you forwarded Nomination Forms of one Hon. Ekperikpe Luke Ekpo as substitute candidate of your Party for the court-ordered rerun refers."
The letter signed by INEC's secretary, Rose Oriaran-Anthony.said the commission cannot approve the request of the senator and the party for substitution of the candidate in the rerun election.
“Consequent upon the above, the commission cannot accede to your request and Sen. Godswill Akpabio remains the candidate of the APC for the Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District court-ordered rerun election," the letter added.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that the APC was planning to substitute Akpabio's candidacy in the Akwa Ibom senatorial rerun with a former member of the House of Representatives, Obong Luke Ekperikpe Ekpo.
The Akwa Ibom Liberation Movement (AILM) said that the senator and the party were planning to use the court as a tool to change the names for the rerun.
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