The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has banned the ruling All Progressives Congress in Zamfara State from fielding candidates for the governorship, state and federal legislative positions in the 2019 elections.
The electoral body in a letter written to APC said the party failed to conduct primaries in the state before the October 7 deadline on the INEC calendar. INEC said that they received the report that no primary was conducted in Zamfara despite the full mobilization and deployment of the commission’s officials.
INEC said it does not expect the ruling APC to submit names of any candidate from Zamfara State. It said the decision was based on the provisions of Sections 87 and 31 of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended).
“For clarity, our position is that the All Progressives Congress (APC), will not be fielding candidates for the governorship, National Assembly and State Assembly Elections in Zamfara state for the 2019 for the general elections,” INEC said in a letter signed by the acting secretary to the commission.
With factions and tussles within the Zamfara state chapter of the APC, the party was unable to come to a consensus on the preferred gubernatorial candidate for the party.
Incumbent governor, Abdulaziz Yari, backed Shehu Idris as his successor while the Senator Kabiru Marafa, a governorship aspirant, stood against the governor’s plans to force a candidate on the party.
The warring in the state division made the National Working Committee (NWC) of the APC announce the dissolution of Zamfara APC executives led by Alhaji Lawali M. Liman.
The dissolved executive still proceeded to hold primary elections that saw Idris win the governorship candidature while Yari emerged as the preferred senatorial candidate for Zamfara West senatorial zone.
However, the report submitted to the APC National headquarter by the Major General Abubakar Mustapha Gana-led Zamfara State Electoral Committee was that there was no primary in Zamfara State.
Former member of the House of Representatives, Bello Matawalle is the People’s Democratic Party’s gubernatorial candidate for the 2019 elections.