The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has stopped the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) from fielding candidates for elective positions in Zamfara state in the 2019 elections.
Okechukwe Ndeche, the commission’s acting secretary, who conveyed this in a letter to Adams Oshiomhole, national chairman of the APC, explained that the commission barred the party from fielding candidates for governorship, national assembly and state assembly elections because of the failure to comply with sections 87 and 31 of the electoral act.
According to the act, parties were expected to comply with the timetable and schedule of INEC by concluding primary elections between August 18 and October 7, 2018.
INEC said it received reports from its Zamfara office, indicating that no primaries were conducted in the state “notwithstanding that our officials were fully mobilised and deployed”.
Zamfara problem began when some stakeholders in the party frustrated the conduct of primary elections.
As a move to resolve the crisis, the national working committee (NWC) of the party had dissolved the Zamfara APC executive committee led by Lawali M. Liman.
The sacked leadership however claimed it returned Mukhtar Idris as winner of last Wednesday’s botched governorship primary election in the state.
It also declared Abdulaziz Yari, governor of the state, as winner of Zamfara west senatorial zone’s primary election in the state, claiming he polled 166,000 votes.
However, the NWC the primaries and set up a panel to conduct fresh elections but aggrieved members of the party prevented the elections from holding.
Supporters of Yari and Kabir Marafa, a governorship aspirant, clashed over the rescheduled primaries.
Marfa had earlier said the party would not be able to present candidates for 2019 if the leadership of the APC did not call Yari to order.