14 candidates to vie for Saturday’s Anambra senatorial re-run

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, said on Wednesday that 14 candidates would participate in the January 13 re-run election in Anambra Central Senatorial District.
The state INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner, Nkwachukwu Orji, made the disclosure during a stakeholders’ meeting in Awka on Wednesday.
The re-run followed the nullification of the election of the PDP candidate Uche Ekwunife, who was returned in 2015 as Senator for the zone.

Mr Orji said the commission had already distributed non-sensitive materials to the affected seven local government areas in the senatorial district.
“The sensitive materials would arrive the state on Thursday and once that happen, we will distribute them to the affected areas’’, he added.
The election will hold in Awka North, Awka South, Idemili North, Idemili South, Anaocha, Njikoka and Dunukofia local government areas.

The INEC official said that a total of 7,670 ad-hoc workers would conduct the election in 1,548 polling units.
Orji stressed that the commission had made all arrangements for the smooth conduct of the election and urged the electorate to shun violence or any form of fraud during and after the exercise.
On the purported order of a Federal High Court stopping the election, the REC said the commission had not received such directive.

“As a state office, INEC Anambra is not responsible for policy issues, we get our directives from INEC national headquarters.
“And no such directive has been received asking us not to go ahead with Jan.13 re-run in Anambra Central Senatorial District.
“We advised political parties to play by the rules, because we will ensure that we deliver free, fair and credible election, which is now a minimum benchmark for INEC in any election we conduct’’, he said.

Mr Orji while responding to questions from stakeholders condemned the issue of vote buying which participants complained characterized the last governorship election held on November 18, 2017.
He said combating the menace require collaborative efforts of all political parties, security agents and INEC officials.
The REC therefore called on the people to join hands with the commission to improve the conduct of elections.
The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has been barred by a court from participating in the election.


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