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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said that candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Zamfara can now participate in the National Assembly, governorship and state House of Assembly elections in the state.
INEC National Commissioner and Chairman Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye said this in a statement this afternoon.
According to the commission, the decision was due to a judgment by the Court of Appeal in Abuja on Thursday, which set aside the judgment of the Federal High Court in Abuja for “lack or want of jurisdiction on the part of the lower court”.
“The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has consistently maintained that it will always obey court judgments and orders. In the case of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Zamfara State, the Federal High Court, Abuja and the Zamfara State High Court issued conflicting orders relating to the participation of the APC in the two strands of elections scheduled for 23rd February and 9th March 2019.
“While the former ruled that the APC, having failed to conduct party primaries cannot field candidates in the said election, the latter decided that it can field candidates having conducted valid party primaries.
“However, the Court of Appeal, Abuja Judicial Division on 21st February 2019 set aside the judgment of the Federal High Court, Abuja for “lack or want of jurisdiction on the part on the lower court.” This in effect means that the Zamfara State High Court’s decision that the APC can field candidates for the National Assembly, Governorship and State Assembly elections is the only valid and subsisting order,” Okoye said.
He said that the commission in compliance with the said order restored the APC to the ballot in the National Assembly, Governorship and State House of Assembly elections scheduled for 23rd February and 9th March 2019.