The chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, has said the commission will rely on the existing electoral act to conduct the 2019 general elections.
This implies that advocates of a new electoral law will have to wait till after the 2019 general election to get their wish.
The INEC Chairman said the commission would conduct next year’s election using the existing laws that are presently valid and in place.
Professor Yakubu said the commission would not be distracted by the wranglings between the Presidency and the National Assembly.
He urged registered political parties, their candidates and supporters to place national interest over their own personal interest.
He said: “As a commission, we are fine-tuning our processes and procedures towards delivering good elections in 2019. The commission is focused and will conduct an election that the Nigerian people will be proud of. But that election has to be and must be conducted under a very peaceful environment.
“The commission is not bothered and will not be distracted by the hue and cry over certain issues and decisions taken by the President and the National Assembly. The commission is focused on organising the 2019 elections using the extant laws, using the laws that are valid as at today and we will not be distracted.
“We urge all registered political parties, their candidates and their supporters to place the national interest over their own personal interest.”
The refusal by the President to assent to the amended electoral act has generated mixed reactions. It would be recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari returned the amended electoral act to the National Assembly, citing reasons for declining his assent.