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2023: Political Parties Strive To Meet INEC’s January 20 Deadline For Submission Of Polling Agents


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Information gathered by Naija News has revealed that some political parties are yet to submit the list of polling agents to the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC).

It was learnt that the majority of political parties are still striving to meet the INEC’s deadline of January 20, 2023, for the submission of the list of their polling agents.

Naija News gathered that the commission’s extension of the submission date to January 20 from December 30, 2022, might be due to the delay from some political parties in the submission of their list.

This platform understands that going by the INEC timetable and schedule of activities for the 2023 presidential and National Assembly elections, political parties were meant to submit lists of polling agents to the electoral officers of the 774 local government areas through dedicated INEC portals by the initial deadline in December.

The exercise as learnt is in fulfilment of Section 43 of the Electoral Act 2022 which mandates that political parties submit lists of polling agents to the electoral umpire.

However, Naija News gathered that while some have submitted others are still struggling to put together the list for submission to meet the new deadline.

It was learnt that the All Progressives Congress (APC) revealed that the party has submitted a comprehensive list of agents assigned to cover the entire 176,846 polling units across the country to INEC.

The party’s Director of Publicity, Bala Ibrahim told Punch that APC was a law-abiding political platform that attends to issues ‘by the book.’

Ibrahim disclosed that the APC has nominated one agent per polling unit and an additional agent has also been selected to be on standby as part of its contingency plan.

The APC chieftain stated that “The APC has submitted the polling agents list long before the earlier December 30 deadline. The ruling party has been ready since. We will have one agent and another inactive person standing at each polling booth. The role of the passive agent is just to be on standby in case of emergency.”

Contrary to the stand of the APC, the Labour Party ( LP) said it was still compiling the list of agents and that the task wasn’t an easy one considering the fact that all the available 176,846 slots for agents, including its local, state and national supervisors have to be filled.

The National Secretary of the Labour Party, Umar Farouk, also told Punch that “I believe you know that the INEC timetable is not sacrosanct. The new deadline has been fixed for the end of January and we are even clamouring for the commission to extend it. As far as the Labour Party is concerned, we have gone very far. We are not lagging in any way.

“According to INEC, there should be one agent to one enabled polling unit and another attached to each local, state and national collation officers. I can tell you that all the slots are being filled as speak.

“Aside from this, we have our own ward, local, state and national supervisors. But that doesn’t mean the party can’t make arrangements for contingency.”

Also, Naija News reports that the National Chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Chief Victor Oye assured that the party will do everything possible to beat the deadline, noting that “We are still on it and we will be done before the January 20 deadline.”

Similarly, the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) National Publicity Secretary, Dr Major Agbo, said his party was compiling the agents’ list.

Agbo submitted that “We are still working on it. Remember that the deadline has been extended to the end of January. So it is being attended to.

“We are submitting over 176,846 polling agents across all the units in the country. That’s what we are trying to do. As a serious party, we are bringing agents for all the polling units in the country.’’

On his part, the National Publicity Secretary of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) Rufus Aiyenigba told Punch that its Information and Communication Technology Department is done with the exercise and would soon submit the names to INEC.

Aiyenigba, who opined that the process required diligence advanced that “We have not submitted because we are not through with the process yet. As we are speaking now, staffers in our ICT department are doing the necessary documentation, uploading the passports of the agents and what have you.

‘’They did not travel for the holidays because of the importance we attach to this vital aspect of the electioneering process. I am not sure any party has concluded this process yet because most, if not all the parties will have agents in all the polling units nationwide.’’

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Confirming the development, the SDP national chairman, Shehu Gabam, said, “The submission is going on throughout the states. So far, we have done very well. We are going to meet up before the deadline.’’