The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, said on Saturday COVID-19 pandemic would not truncate Nigeria’s democracy and electoral process.
Yakubu stated this in his remarks at the commission’s first virtual meeting with Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) in Abuja.
Yakubu said that like it did to every other national institution, the COVID-19 pandemic had disrupted INEC activities.
He said: “For instance, further engagements with the National Assembly and stakeholders on electoral reform and the conduct of some off-season elections have to be suspended because of the global health emergency.
“Happily, the PTF has issued guidelines on protective measures for the gradual restoration of normalcy nationwide.
”On that basis, the commission recently released its own policy on conducting elections in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The commission is convinced that electoral activities can resume, but in full compliance with the advisory issued by health authorities.
“Consequently, the governorship elections in Edo and Ondo States scheduled for September 19 and October 10 respectively, will proceed as planned.”
Yakubu said some political parties had notified the commission of the dates for their primaries which would lead to the nomination of their candidates for the elections.
According to him, while the commission takes the COVID-19 pandemic seriously, the democratic and electoral processes cannot be truncated because of it.