Calls for Amendment of the 1999 Constitution over the Death of a Candidate for an Election Preceding Conclusion of Polls in Nigeria: A Critique

ABSTRACT

The spate of inconclusive elections in Nigeria due to election malpractices and the wanton resort to re-runs as remedy without consideration for legal and economic implications is alarming. The Independent National Electoral Commission’s role during the Kogi State gubernatorial election held on the 21st of November, 2015 opened up a number of issues.  Principal amongst the issues was the calls for amendment of the 1999 Constitution. The Supreme Court stated that INEC took the most appropriate step in compliance with its Manual despite the affirmation by it that there is no constitutional and electoral provision to address the issue. The article argues that the merit of the step taken by INEC not to continue with the elections was mischievous. If INEC had honed up to its responsibility in conformity with electoral laws, the Kogi State gubernatorial elections would have been concluded without the constitutional gap melodramas. The article concludes that the current constitutional and electoral provisions are adequate to address the conduct of elections in Nigeria. What is needed is strict adherence to provisions of law in the management and conduct of elections as well as arraigns election offences so as to checkmate any anti-democratic tendencies in the electoral process.

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UNILAG Law Review, (2018) Volume 2 Edition 1

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