The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has reacted to the claims of complicity levelled against it by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) over the controversy surrounding the educational qualifications of the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, General Muhammadu Buhari, restating that the commission has no powers to disqualify any candidate sent to it by the political parties and has advised the PDP to challenge Buhari’s candidature in court.
INEC, which was responding to the allegations made by the PDP presidential campaign spokesman, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, said if the ruling party feels so strongly about the matter, “it knows what to do”.
Speaking on the issue on Sunday, INEC’s Director, Voter Education and Publicity, Mr. Wale Uzzi, and its Director, Legal Services, Mr. Ibrahim Bawa, stressed that the commission has no constitutional power to disqualify any candidate presented to it by the political parties.
According to Uzzi, “In line with Section 31 of the Electoral Act, the commission has no powers to disqualify any candidate whose name has been submitted to INEC.
“This is the power of the law and it is expected that a political party in the calibre of the PDP should know this aspect of the provision of the law.
“If the PDP feels strongly about this matter, it knows what to do. It should take him to court and that is the only option. If any political party is aggrieved and is serious about it, the only option available is the court.”
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