Thursday, April 27, 2017 11:02 pm
The National Conscience Party (NCP) on Thursday said it had concluded arrangements to sue the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) for mandating candidates for the forthcoming council polls to pay nomination fees.
Mr Fatai Ibu-Owo, NCP`s state chairman disclosed the party`s intention an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.
He said the suit would be filed at a court in the state between Thursday and Monday.
Ibu-Owo said the step became inevitable as the party had written to the commission twice on the illegality of the fees.
The NCP Chairman wondered why LASIEC would charge chairmanship aspirants, N100,000, Vice – Chairmanship aspirants, N75,000 and Councillorship, N50,000 as nomination fees, when it had enough budget to conduct the polls.
“This is clearly illegal as the participation in the election should be free for all aspirants. We are surely going to resist this and sue LASIEC.
“The state government already budgeted N3billion for LASIEC for the conduct of the election and additional N360 million for its recurrent expenditure, so why the illegal fees?
He said the payment would shut out some political parties as it would mean candidates aspiring for the various positions across the 57 councils would have to pay.
“This cannot stand as there are two court judgments already against the fees. We are going to challenge the illegality in court again,“ he said.
Ibu-Owo, however, said apart from the issue of nomination fee, the party was ready for the polls and would present candidates for positions in all 20 Local Governments and 37 Local Council Development Areas (LCDA).
On the flag off of the Continuous Voter Registration exercise by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the state, the NCP chairman said it was a good development.
He, however, faulted the use of local government offices of INEC for the exercise, saying the method would deny many residents registration.
Ibu-Owo suggested that the registration should be done at the various polling units so that every qualified Lagosian could register and participate in elections.
NAN reports that LASIEC has fixed July 22 for the council elections and July 29 for run-off elections, if need be. (NAN)