The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has registered an additional party, the African People’s Party (APP), bringing the number of registered political parties in the country to 46.
INEC Chairman, Mahmood Yakubu made this known while swearing in nine new Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) on Wednesday in Abuja.
Yakubu said that the party was on Tuesday issued Certificate of Registration in compliance with a court order.
“The Commission issued Certificate of Registration to APP, which originally applied for registration as a political party in 2014.
“With this development, the number of political parties in Nigeria now stands at 46,’’ he said.
Yakubu also disclosed that the commission had so far registered 2,092,434 new voters under the ongoing nationwide Continuous Voter Registration.
“At the end of the first quarter of the exercise, some 1,810,153 citizens were registered.
“The exercise is now in the second week of the second quarter and already some 282,281 citizens have been registered, making a total of 2,092,434 new registrants so far,’’ he added.
Yakubu congratulated the newly sworn-in RECs, five of which were reappointed for a second and final term, bringing the total number of RECs to 23.
He said that their appointment came at an auspicious time, exactly 548 days to the 2019 General Elections, and after the conclusion of the Commission’s Strategic Plan 2017-2021.
Yakubu advised them to be fair to all, partisan to none, saying that as election managers, they would be responsible for the implementation of the plan.
“As election managers, you must maintain the required openness and consultation.
“At the same time, you must be very firm and courageous on the side of the law as well as our regulations and guidelines as required of you as unbiased umpire, be fair to all, partisan to none.’’
Yakubu said that as new appointees, they would be immediately deployed to field orientation in the four elections to be conducted by the commission over the next few weeks.
Mike Igini, one of the newly sworn-in RECs, responding on behalf of others pledged that they would be guided by the mission and core values of INEC.
The new RECs include Igini, Asman Maikudi, Sam Olumekun, Riskuwa Shehu, Kassim Geidam, Jubrin Zarewa, Abdulganiyu Raji, Sam Egwu, and Sudiq Musa.