You can’t change your running mate- Igbini
Rights activist Emmanuel Igbini has, in contrast to INEC, said that candidates of various political parties for the 2023 general elections do not have the constitutional authority to alter the names of Vice-Presidential and Deputy Governorship Candidates they nominated to INEC.
What’s his argument?
Igbini, with reference to sections 141, 142, 186, and 187 of the 1999 Constitution, argues that the constitution does not allow candidates to change their running mate after submitting their names to INEC, except for certain conditions. “I reiterate that the constitutional power to nominate persons as candidates for a general election in Nigeria does not confer the same power to the nominator to withdraw the nominee once officially submitted to INEC”, he said.
What are those conditions?
Voluntary withdrawal or death. Igbini insists that only the nominee may voluntarily withdraw from the race – at the latest 90 days prior to the INEC-set date for the general election in 2023 – or if the nominee passes away prior to the election’s conclusion. As consultation continues in the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) over the choice of the party’s Vice-presidential candidate, INEC has given political parties till July 15 to submit names of their candidates.
But countering INEC’S position, Igbini asks – rhetorically – if INEC is saying that the delegates of the political parties who nominated presidential and governorship candidates also “have the constitutional powers to change them” before the July 15 window set by INEC.