2023: INEC polls timeline creates anxiety in APC, PDP

Written by on February 28, 2022

There is anxiety, almost disarray, in the All Progressives Congress (APC) following the release of the timeline for the 2023 elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) at the weekend.

Unlike the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) which has all its organs in place, the APC is being run by a caretaker committee at the national level.

It has slated its convention for March 26.

Arising from the new electoral law, INEC released the timeline, which mandates political parties to conduct primaries into all elective positions between April 4 and June 3.

The implication of this is that presidential primaries must hold within the period.

Apprehension heightened in the ruling party by Section 31 of its constitution, which makes it mandatory for any party official who wants to contest an elective office to resign 30 days to the primary.

The March 26 convention date is barely eight days to the commencement of the prescribed period for shadow polls.

President Muhammadu Buhari and APC governors are expected to meet tomorrow on the new developments.

Due to constitutional provisions, APC National Caretaker Committee Secretary Senator James Akpanudoedehe may have to resign, if he is still interested in pursuing his governorship ambition in Akwa Ibom State.

The PDP has started consultations on its plan for the primary, following the INEC timeline release.

It was learnt at the weekend that no fewer than 13 ministers are in a dilemma on whether to resign before the primaries or adhere to the constitutional provision of quitting their offices on or before 30 days to the election.

Many of the ministers are believed to be planning to contest for president, governor and the Senate.

While some forces are pushing for the exit of the ambitious ministers, others want them to stick to the 1999 Constitution.

The election timetable may also affect plans by the third force being championed by Prof. Attahiru Jega and others for the transformation of their group into a political party for the purpose of participating in next year’s poll.

A source, who spoke in confidence, said APC was lagging behind in the preparation for the elections.

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