41 party applications pending at INEC

A total of 41 applications from various associations seeking registration as political parties are currently waiting for approvals by  Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC.)

This is even as 28 political parties, including the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) were yet to submit their election expenses report since the 2015 general election.

Section 92 (3) of the Electoral Act 2010 as amended requires political parties to submit to the electoral umpire their election expenses within six months after an election.

However, out of the 30 registered political parties in the country and despite letters of reminders, only Democratic Peoples Congress (DPC) has submitted the report to INEC regarding the 2015 general election.

Young Democratic Party (YDP), on its own, responded to INEC’s reminder, indicating that it did not field candidates for the elections.

In addition, the commission is yet to appoint auditors to examine and report on political party accounts/finances for 2015.

In fact, the executive summary for those of 2013 and 2014 financial years are yet to be concluded for submission to the National Assembly and publication in three national newspapers, in line with Section 226 (1) of the 1999 Constitution and Section 89 (4) of the 2010 Electoral Act as amended.

INEC national chairman, Professor Mahmud  Yakubu, confirmed these in Abuja, on Monday, and described the failure by the political parties to submit their election expenses report as disheartening.

He admitted that only the summary  of the annual audited reports up to 2012 financial year had been forwarded to the National Assembly and published as required by relevant laws.

Yakubu disclosed that the process of appointing auditors for the 2015 financial year was about being concluded.

Speaking at the first annual conference of Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC) in Abuja, the INEC boss who was represented by a national commissioner, A.T. Simbini, said it was clear that there existed several challenges for the commission and political parties in the areas of internal party democracy, tracking of candidate campaign expenses and reporting of political party financues.