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INEC chairman reacts to call to contest 2023 presidency

Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof Yakubu Mahmood, has reacted to claims that he might be contemplating vying for the 2023 presidential election.

Recall that central bank governor, Godwin Emefiele, purchased the presidential form of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The development sparked widespread outrage as many averred that his action further underscores the impunity and undermining of critical institutions under president Muhammadu Buhari.

In its reaction, the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria had on Saturday asked Nigerians not to be shocked should the Chairman of INEC purchases the N100 million Expression of Interest and Nomination forms after the forms were “bought” for the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele.

But the INEC helmsman said the thought of aspiring to any elective public office never crossed his mind and that he wasn’t interested in the presidential election.

in a press statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Rotimi Yekanmi, on Sunday, Mahmood described the insinuations that he would imitate Emefiele as preposterous.

The statement was titled, ‘Calls on the INEC chairman to join the 2023 presidential election’.

The statement read, “Our attention has been drawn to innuendoes in certain quarters that Nigerians should not be surprised if the INEC Chairman joins the Presidential race or urges him to do so. It is a preposterous proposition. It will not happen.

“The Chairman remains an umpire committed to free, fair and credible elections. His constitutional responsibilities as the Chief Electoral Commissioner of the Federation and Returning Officer for the presidential election are onerous enough for him to even contemplate straying into extraneous matters at variance with the law, morality and his personal principles.

“The chairman will continue to discharge his responsibilities without affection for, or ill-will against, any political party or candidate.”

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