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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has postponed bye-elections in eleven states billed to hold on October 31st, 2020.
In a statement, signed Thursday, by its National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, INEC said the decision was taken after a meeting of the electoral body with the 37 Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) to review preparations for the 15 bye-elections.
“On Wednesday 21st October 2020, the Commission notified the nation that having taken cognizance of the current security situation in parts of the country, a meeting with the 37 RECs will be held to evaluate the situation in the States and Constituencies where bye-elections have been scheduled.
“Accordingly, the Commission has decided to postpone the bye-elections in the 6 Senatorial Districts and 9 State Constituencies.” the statement explained
“This decision is in compliance with Section 26 (2) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended), which gives the Commission the power to postpone an election if there is reason to believe that a serious breach of the peace is likely to occur if the election is proceeded with on that date, or that it is impossible to conduct the elections as a result of natural disasters or other emergencies.” the statement further read.
INEC, however, disclosed that it would continue to monitor the situation in the states where the elections are to be held and meet in two weeks to review the situation and also pick a feasible date for the polls.
The Lagos east senatorial and state assembly by-elections were supposed to hold on the 31st October; however, in the last couple of weeks, Lagos has been embroiled in the #EndSARS protests against police brutality which culminated in the shooting of unarmed protesters by security forces.
The state government on Tuesday had imposed a 24 hour curfew on the state after reports of looting, vandalism and violence unleashed on residents by local hoodlums across the city.
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