Politics

INEC has re-configured 95% of smart card readers-Chairman

The Independent National Commission (INEC) on Tuesday said it has achieved 95 per cent configuration of the Smart Card Readers to be deployed for the Presidential and National Assembly elections on Saturday.

Briefing newsmen on Tuesday in Abuja on the commission’s preparations for the postponed national elections, Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, promised that the configuration of the card readers would be completed on Wednesday.

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INEC backs down on campaign ban

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has lifted the ban on electoral campaigns. In a statement issued on Monday after a meeting, the commission reviewed its earlier position and lifted the ban.

In a statement signed by National Commissioner Information and Voter Education, Festus Okoye, the Commission allowed for campaigns to resume immediately and terminate at midnight on Thursday.

The statement reads:

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Buhari urges vigilance on the part of APC agents

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday challenged agents of the All Progressives Congress (APC) at the forthcoming polls to be vigilant and watch out for the party’s interests at the polling units during the forthcoming general elections.

The president gave the charge at the opening of the ongoing emergency caucus meeting of the APC in Abuja on Monday.

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Japanese Abe decline comment on Trump Peace Prize nomination

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe declined Monday to say if he had nominated U.S. President Donald Trump for the Nobel Peace Prize, though he also emphasized he did not deny doing so.

Trump's assertion Friday that Abe had nominated him for the honor and sent him a copy of the letter has raised criticism in Japan.

Questioned in parliament about Trump's claim that he had done so, Abe said, "In light of the Nobel committee's policy of not disclosing recommenders and nominees for 50 years, I decline to comment."

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Venezuela bars EU parliamentarian

The government of embattled President Nicolas Maduro has barred five European parliamentarians from entering the country.

They had been invited to visit by Maduro’s rival for power, Juan Guaido.

The Venezuelan government on Sunday blocked a group of representatives from the European Parliament from entering the country.

The lawmakers had been invited by Juan Guaido, who appointed himself interim president in early February in a challenge to long-acting President Nicolas Maduro, triggering a power crisis.

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INEC meets on elections campaign

Following the opposition of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) to the Independent National Electoral Commission’s (INEC) ban on electioneering during the one week extension of poll, the commission will meet today to review the restriction.

INEC, according to its national chairman’s Chief Press Secretary (CPS), Mr. Rotimi Oyekanmi, would meet to review its position and decide whether or not to reopen campaigns.

The two leading parties have argued that the commission’s restriction has no basis in law.

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NGOs, International observers back INEC

The National Democratic Institute (NDI) and International Republican Institute (IRI), both NGOs, joint international observation mission have thrown their weight on INEC’s postponement of the Feb. 16 elections to ensure credible polls.

This was expressed in a statement on Monday in Yola by Mr Tony Awesu, Head of Media of NDI, for the mission on Nigeria’s 2019 election.

According to Awesu, NDI/IRI fully endorsed the postponement of the 2019 elections in Nigeria and will continue to support Nigeria’s democratic development.

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PDP says INEC cannot stop campaigns

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), says the administrative prohibition of the resumption of political campaigns by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) contravened the Electoral Law.

The PDP National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, said this in a statement issued on Sunday in Abuja.

It would be recalled that INEC had on Saturday shifted the dates for the General Elections a few hours to the opening of polling units across the country, attributing the development to logistical challenges.

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IPMAN directs members to reduce fuel price

In order to ease some burden on travellers during the rescheduled elections, the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has directed its members to reduce pump price of petrol.

The association has directed its members to cut the price from N145 per litre to N140.

A statement by the National President of the association, Elder Chinedu Okworonkwo, was issued through the Chairman, IPMAN Kano state chapter, Alhaji Bashir Dan-Malam.

Okworonkwo said the marketers were expected to comply with the directive from Feb. 20 to Feb. 25.

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President Buhari reacts to elections postponement by INEC

STATEMENT BY PRESIDENT BUHARI ON THE POSTPONEMENT OF GENERAL ELECTIONS BY INEC

I am deeply disappointed that despite the long notice given and our preparations both locally and internationally, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) postponed the Presidential and National Assembly elections within hours of its commencement.

Many Nigerians have traveled to various locations to exercise their right to vote, and international observers are gathered.

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