By Peter Duru, Makurdi
The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has disclosed that only three political parties, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, the All Progressives Congress, APC, and the Labour Party, LP, will be fielding candidates for all the available elective positions in Benue state in the coming 2023 generel elections.
The Commission also disclosed that a total of 426 candidates, representing 17 political parties will be contesting for positions in the state in the elections.
The Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, for Benue State, Prof. Samuel Egwu who made the disclosure during a stakeholders meeting in Makurdi appealed to all stakeholders in the state to join hands with the commission to ensure a free and fair elections in the country in 2023.
According to the REC, “the only way we can conduct an election that will be seen to be free and fair is when we build stakeholders confidence in the electoral process.
“And all of us have to work together to improve the level of trust in our election.
“Rules are being made on a daily basis that take the powers away from the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to determine the outcome of elections. That is what we have done, which is good for our democracy. And since 2011 Nigerian have been saying that our elections have improved which is very true.
“So in the coming elections 17 political parties will be fielding candidates in the elections that will be conducted in Benue state.
“We have a total of 426 candidates competing across the different parties ranging from governorship, State Assembly, and National Assembly.
“And of the 17 political parties, it is only the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, All Progressives Congress, APC, and Labour Party, LP, that are fielding candidates for all positions.
“We are running the election in 276 Registration Areas or Electoral Wards in Benue state.