The Independent National Electoral Commission says the fifteen political parties that have indicated interest to contest in the Edo state Governorship Election must conclude their primaries for the nomination of candidates in the next 10 days.
Chairman of the commission Professor Mahmood Yakubu insists the deadline for the conduct of primary election is fixed as there will be no extension beyond Saturday, 27th June.
He says while the conduct of the primaries will be the sole responsibility of political parties INEC officials will monitorthe elections as required by law.
The INEC Chairman disclosed at the meeting with the inter agency consultative committee on election security that candidates of political parties must meet the four mandatory requirements for eligibility for Governorship elections enshrined in Section 177 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended).
These constitutional requirement entails that A candidate nominated by a political party must be a Nigerian citizen by birth; and must have attained the age of thirty-five (35) years;
A candidate must be a member of, and sponsored by, a political party; and must be educated up to at least School Certificate level or equivalent.
INEC says Adherence to these clear constitutional provisions is compulsory in order to avoid the unnecessary litigations that follow the nomination of candidates, some of which are still pending before the Courts.
One of such cases involves the attempt to substitute an ineligible candidate by one of the political parties and was determined on Tuesday by the Supreme Court in favour of INEC.