2023: Ex-APC Presidential Aspirant Says Election Primaries Should be Postponed
- Gbenga Olawepo-Hashim has issued a strong warning to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) ahead of 2023
- The former presidential aspirant cautioned against any attempt by the electoral commission to stampede the various political parties
- Olawepo-Hashim went on to note that partisan interests trailing the confusion being created by INEC must not be allowed to endanger the conduct of the 2023 election
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FCT, Abuja - Ahead of the 2023 general election, Gbenga Olawepo-Hashim has warned that the plots and partisan interests trailing the confusion currently being created by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) must not be allowed to endanger the conduct of the poll.
Olawepo-Hashim, a chieftain of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) made this known in a statement from his media office and made available to Legit.ng on Saturday, May 21.
The former presidential aspirant explained that the looming danger stems from the tight schedule of primaries imposed on political parties by the country’s political umpire.
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“The schedule has been influenced purely by a section of the political elites who have positioned themselves to benefit from this INEC calendar.
“We have come a long way in our journey and as one of those who played a prominent role in that transition process in 1998, I can smell danger from afar any time it rears its ugly head.
“The current tough guy grandstanding of the INEC chief must give way to reason so as not to endanger the entire process.
“The political process is robbed of any clarity as there is even confusion as to who is lawfully a qualified delegate to primaries that are supposed to be going on.
“Unfortunately, INEC Management has continuously insisted that the party primaries schedule cannot be changed.
“To start with, it is not the business of INEC to fix dates of primaries in as much as the primaries are conducted 180 days before the election in accordance with the provision of extant law.”
Olawepo-Hashim insisted that he had expected the parties to be in court over the issue to lay to rest the INEC meddlesomeness in what is their internal affairs.
He maintained that the window of extension of party primaries canvassed for will also allow the party leadership, the executive, and the legislative leadership to get together to clean up the mess created in the Electoral Act in a bid by different groups to outsmart one another.
Electoral Act: Why Buhari, Osinbajo, Govs, others may not vote at APC presidential primaries
Earlier, Legit.ng reported that there are strong indications that President Muhammadu Buhari, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and some prominent chieftains of the ruling APC may not vote at the forthcoming presidential primary of the party.
This may not be averted unless the president signs the fresh amendment to the Electoral Act into law by Sunday, May 22.
Other that party's chieftains that would be affected by not signing the act into law include National Assembly members, governors, their deputies and other statutory delegates in the party.
2023: Tinubu, Osinbajo, others to watch out as APC slams aspirants with serious threat
Meanwhile, the screening committee of the APC threatened to abandon aspirants with questionable or criminal records who may fail to disclose the same to the ruling party.
Warning the aspirants on Sunday, May 15, the APC vowed that it will not help any of them with cases of misconduct, including fraud and conviction, who fail to avail themselves of the window by the screening exercise to reveal the cases to the panel.
Other issues facing the aspirants include evidence of disengagement from their places of work, payment of N7,600 annual dues, and clearance in case of conviction.