INEC To Present Certificates Of Return To NASS Members-Elect Today As Okorocha Misses Out

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) will today, Thursday, March 14, present Certificates of Return to the newly elected members of the National Assembly.

According to a statement by the electoral umpire, the event will take place at Africa Hall of the International Conference Centre (ICC) in Abuja.

For the newly elected Senators, the presentation will take place at 10am while for the newly elected House of Representatives members, the presentation will hold at 2pm today.

INEC had earlier published names of those to be given the certificate of return.

In the list of Senators-elect, there were 109 slots, however, some names were missing from the list.

Most notable of the names that did not make the list is Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo state who won the election for Imo West Senatorial district.

According to INEC, the governor’s name was omitted over the allegation that the returning officer declared him the winner ‘under duress’.

INEC’s list was published two weeks after Nigerians elected their representatives at both chambers of the National Assembly, for another four years.

The election was keenly contested by candidates of various political parties, as some lawmakers and sitting state governors were shocked by their co-contestants in the polls.

The Returning Officer for Imo West district election, Professor Ibeawuchi Innocent, had said that he declared Governor Okorocha the winner under duress.

“I declared this thing before under duress; I’m still under duress declaring this one,” Professor Innocent had said at the collation centre in February.

But the governor faulted the allegations and accused the returning officer of acting a script.

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He had also called on the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in the state to call the electoral official to order.

In his reaction, INEC Chairman Professor Mahmood Yakubu stated that the commission would not reward “bad behaviour”.

The INEC boss had warned that politicians caught in an act of electoral malpractice would not receive the certificate of return.

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