INEC set for Supreme Court over conflicting appeal court verdicts

INEC set for Supreme Court over conflicting appeal court verdicts

- INEC said it would seek Supreme Court pronouncement over the conflicting verdicts of two appeal courts

- The move becomes necessary following an appeal court verdict mandating the commission to reinstate parties it previously deregistered

- Earlier, a separate appeal court had upheld INEC's power to weed-out political parties, thus generating confusion

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The Independent National Electoral Commission has vowed to approach the Supreme Court over conflicting verdicts of two courts of appeal over the deregistration of some political parties.

It would be recalled that on February 2020, the electoral umpire deregistered 74 political parties out of the 92 in the data of the commission.

INEC said the parties were deregistered due to their failure to win at least one political seat in the 2019 general elections.

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INEC To Approach Supreme Court Over Conflicting Appeal Court Judgments.

INEC said it would seek Supreme Court pronouncement over its power to deregister some political parties. Credit: Facebook.
Source: UGC

The electoral body axed 74 parties, including the Alliance For Democracy (AD), Fresh Democratic Party (FDP), and others while All Progressives Congress (APC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and 16 other parties survived the onslaught of the commission.

Some of the political parties axed out by INEC on Thursday, February 7, condemned the electoral body's action and vowed to take legal action against the decision.

However, the deregistration of the parties was on Thursday, June 11, upheld by a Federal High Court in Abuja.

The Federal High Court in Abuja on Friday, June 5, again dashed the hope of the 74 political parties deregistered by the commission to regain their registration as it declared that INEC acted within the ambit of the law.

Meanwhile, on Monday, August 10, a court of appeal judgement ordered INEC to reinstate the deregistered parties based on the appeal filed by ACD and 22 others.

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This obviously contradicted the earlier judgement upholding the power of the commission to weed out political parties that do not meet certain requirements.

In a statement by its commissioner, Festus Okoye, INEC vowed to approach the apex court to give final verdicts in respect to the conflicting judgements of the two appeal courts.

"Faced with two conflicting judgements from the same Court, the Commission is not in a position to pick and choose which one of them to obey.

"Consequently, the Commission will approach the Supreme Court for a final resolution of the issues raised in the two conflicting judgements," part of the statement read.

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Earlier, reported that INEC raised an eyebrow against conflicting court verdicts and litigations that have characterised the pre-governorship election in Edo state.

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Speaking on Tuesday, June 23, ahead of the poll slated for September, INEC commissioner, Okoye, said the lawsuits and ploys are capable of disrupting the smooth conduct of the election and the parties' primaries.

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