The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) said on Tuesday it would approach the Supreme Court conflicting judgements from the Court of Appeal on parties’ deregistration.
The appellate court on Monday nullified the INEC deregistration of 22 political parties in the country.
The commission had in February deregistered 74 political parties for failing to meet the criteria provided for by section 225(a) of the 1999 constitution (as amended).
In a statement issued by its National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, in Abuja, INEC confirmed the receipt of the appeal court’s judgement.
Okoye said: “In the judgement, the Court of Appeal held that the deregistration of ACD and 22 others ultra vires the powers of the commission and ordered the commission to reinstate them.
He recalled that on July 29, the appeal court in an appeal filed by the National Unity Party (NUP) affirmed the power of INEC to deregister political parties that fail to meet the constitutional threshold in section 225A.
He added that NUP which was dissatisfied with the judgment lodged an appeal which is presently pending before the Supreme Court.
“The commission is therefore faced with two conflicting judgements from the Court of Appeal; one affirming the powers of the commission to deregister political parties and the other setting aside the deregistration of ACD and 22 others.
“Faced with two conflicting judgements from the same court, the commission is not in a position to pick and choose which one of them to obey.
“Consequently, the commission will approach the Supreme Court for a final resolution of the issues raised in the two conflicting judgements,” the INEC official added.