By Anthony Ogbonna
The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has postponed to February 23rd, the General election earlier scheduled for Saturday, February 16th, 2019.
INEC chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu,while briefing newsmen at the commission’s headquarters, announced that continuing with the election as earlier scheduled for today, 16th February, 2019, was no longer feasible.
He therefore announced that the presidential and National Assembly elections had been moved to February 23, 2019.
He also said that the governorship and state assembly elections have also been moved by one week to March 9, 2019.
Below is his full statement:
“Ladies and gentlemen, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) met on Friday 15, February 2019, and reviewed its preparations for the 2019 general elections scheduled for Saturday, 16 February 2019, and Saturday 2 March 2019.
Following a careful review of the implementation of its logistics and operational plan, and the determination to conduct free, fair, and credible elections, the commission came to the conclusion that proceeding with the elections as scheduled is no longer feasible.
Consequently, the commission has decided to reschedule the Presidential and National Assembly elections to Saturday, 23 February 2019.
Furthermore, the Governorship, State House of Assembly, and Federal Capital Territory Area Council elections are rescheduled to Saturday, 9 March 2019.
This will afford the commission the opportunity to address identified challenges in order to maintain the quality of our elections.
This was a difficult decision for the commission to take but necessary for the successful delivery of the elections and the consolidation of our democracy.
The commission will meet with key stakeholders to update them on this development at 2pm on Saturday, 16 February 2019, at the Abuja International Conference Centre.
Thank you very much.”