2023: Lawan’s name missing on INEC’s final list as 4,223 candidates jostle for National Assembly

The Senate President, Ahmed Lawan may not be returning to the Red Chamber following the omission of his name on the final list of 2023 Senatorial Candidates released by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Tuesday, September, 2022.

Lawan, who had contested for the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential primary had been at loggerheads with Bashir Machina over the senatorial seat after Lawan lost the APC presidential primaries to Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

Machina, according to a certified true copy of INEC’s report from May 28, 2022, defeated Lawan in the election with 289 votes out of 300 delegates.

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INEC, on June 23, 2022, certified the document and did not mention Ahmad Lawan, the Senate President who has been jostling to return to the Senate on the APC ticket.

However, no name was published for Yobe North in the list released by the commission.

INEC, which confirmed this in a statement by the National Commissioner in Charge of Voters’ Education, Festus Okoye, also posted the list on its website.

The list contained 36 presidential candidates and the running mates of 18 political parties. Also, a total of 4,223 candidates will battle for 469 legislative positions (senatorial and federal constituencies) at the federal level.

The commissioner, however, said the final list of candidates for state elections (governorship and state constituencies) would be published on October 4, 2022, as indicated in the timetable and schedule of activities for the 2023 general elections.

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Okoye also noted that the commission also received litigation during the period of compiling the final list.

The statement partly read, “At its regular weekly meeting held today, Tuesday, September 20, 2022, the commission approved the final list of candidates for national elections (presidential, senatorial, and federal constituencies) pursuant to Section 32(1) of the Electoral Act 2022 and Item 8 of the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the 2023 General Election.’’

Speaking further in the statement, Okoye noted that the list that was published by the commission contained the names of individuals who were validly nominated by their parties.

He said, “The list published today contains the names of candidates validly nominated for national elections at the close of party primaries and the period earmarked for withdrawal and substitution of candidates. The final list of candidates for state elections (governorship and state constituencies) will be published on October 4, 2022, as already indicated on the timetable and schedule of activities for the 2023 general election.

“In summary, all 18 political parties have fielded candidates and their running mates for the presidential election. For legislative elections, 1,101 candidates are vying for 109 Senate seats and 3,122 candidates are vying for House of Representatives seats, making a total of 4,223 candidates contesting for 469 legislative positions. In terms of gender distribution, 3,875 candidates are male, made up of 35 for President and Vice President, 1,008 for the Senate, and 2,832 for the House of Representatives. Similarly, 381 females, comprising 1 for the Presidency, 92 for the Senate, and 288 for the House of Representatives, are contesting. There are also 11 people with disabilities in the race.’’

The list showed that the commission approved the APC presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu, and his running mate, Kashim Shettima; the Peoples Democratic Party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, and his running mate, Ifeanyi Okowa; and the Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi, and running mate, Dati Baba-Ahmed.

Aside from the six presidential and vice presidential candidates from the three parties, INEC approved 30 other presidential and VP candidates from 15 other political parties.

According to the list, these include Accord Party presidential candidate, Imumolen Christopher, and the VP candidate, Bello Maru; Action Alliance presidential candidate, Almustapha Hamza, and his running mate, Johnson Chukwuka.

Others are the African Action Congress presidential candidate, Sowore Omoyele, and the VP candidate, Magashi Garba; African Democratic Congress presidential candidate, Kachikwu Dumebi, and his running mate, Buhari Ahmed; Action Democratic Party presidential candidate, Sani Yusuf and his running mate, Udo Okor; All Progressives Grand Alliance presidential candidate, Umeadi Chukwudi, and his VP candidate, Mohammed Koli; and Allied Peoples Movement presidential candidate, Ojei Chichi, and the VP candidate, Ibrahim Mohammed.

The list also includes the All People’s Party with Nnadi Osita and Hamisu Isa; the Boost Party with Adenuga Oluwafemi and Mustapha Turaki; the New Nigeria Peoples Party with Rabiu Kwankwaso and Idahosa Isaac; the National Rescue Mission’s Osakwe Johnson and Kyabo  Muhammad; the Peoples Redemption Party’s  Abiola Kolawole and Zego Haruna.

Others are the presidential candidate of the Social Democratic Party, Adebayo Adewole Ebenezer, and the VP candidate, Buhari Yusuf; the presidential candidate of the Young Progressive Party, Ado-Ibrahim Abdulmalik, and the VP candidate Enyinna Michael Kasarachi; the presidential candidate of the Zenith Labour Party, Nwanyanwu Daniel, and the VP candidate, Abubakar Jibrin.

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