Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has raised fear about the growing numbers of political associations that are applying to register as parties, saying the trend has grave consequences, particularly as regard 2019 election.
INEC chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, raised the alarm while speaking at an election stakeholders’ summit in Abuja on Wednesday, an occasion he somehow used to clear the air on the allegation that non-Nigerians were being enfranchised by the electoral commission.
Yakubu revealed that138 political associations had applied for registration as political parties, adding that more than 100 political parties could enter the ballot paper in the forthcoming general elections.
“As at June 8, 2018, we have received requests from 138 associations to register as political parties to join the already 68 registered political parties. So, we may have more than the 68 registered political parties before the 2019 general elections.
“I am looking at November when we will have the sample of the ballot paper and by that time we would also have known the number of political parties contesting in each constituency.”
He said an estimated nine million Nigerians had as at May 24 been added to the nation’s voters’ register, bringing the total number of Nigerians captured to vote at an estimated 80 million, adding that Nigerian Immigration Service has been deployed to the voters registration centres across the country, with more than 300 non-Nigerians apprehended for attempting to register.