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INEC Releases Guidelines, Bans Campaigns In Churches, Mosques

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has released guidelines for the conduct of political activities in the 2023 general elections.

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"Help Us Identify Underage Persons, Errors On Voters’ Register" - INEC Tells Nigerians

INEC Guidelines For 2022 General Elections

This was contained in a six-page document titled “Conduct of Political Rallies, Processions, and Campaigns,”

In the document, INEC prohibited the use of abusive language and hate speech as well as campaigns and political rallies in places of worship.

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It also stated that no person attending a political rally, procession, or campaign should be in possession of any offensive weapon.

According to the electoral umpire, the only people authorised to carry arms at such events, are police officers or members of security agencies who are specifically posted to be present at the respective political rallies or processions.

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“No political campaign shall hold in places designated as religious centres, police stations, and public offices.

“Political campaign shall not involve the use of abusive languages or any form of hate speech.

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“State apparatus including the media shall not be employed to the advantage or
the disadvantage of any political party or candidate at any election,” it stated.

INEC noted that the objective of political rallies was to project, offer, sensitise and create awareness about the party’s symbol, flag, slogan, and manifesto.

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The commission mandated political parties to submit a notification of the schedule of their campaigns stating the date, time, venue, agenda, and list of members of the organising committee and police approval within the jurisdiction of the campaigns, within a minimum period no later than 10 days to the commencement of their campaigns.

It added that political parties and candidates should conduct campaigns based on the constitution and manifestoes, complying with the provisions of Regulations and Guidelines for Political Parties 2022 issued by the commission, political parties’ codes of conduct, regulations, and guidelines that may be issued by the National Broadcasting Commission, as well as COVID-19 safety protocols and other public health regulations and measures.

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Meanwhile, Kanyi Daily reported that a Federal High Court in Abuja recently ordered the INEC to immediately resume the Continuous Voters Registration until 90 days before the 2023 general elections.

Justice Inyang Ekwo, in the judgment, also directed INEC to ensure that eligible Nigerians were not deprived of the opportunity to have their voter card for the forthcoming poll.

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