Ahead of the November 16 governorship election in Kogi State, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has made public, names of 51 candidates and their running mates, cleared for the contest.
The list of the cleared governorship candidates and their running mates as well as their details were displayed yesterday at the INEC’s headquarters in Lokoja, Kogi State.
Prominent amongst those cleared for the election include incumbent Governor Yahaya Bello who is flag bearer of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Engr. Musa Wada who is flag bearer of the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
While Bello hails from Okene in Kogi Central Senatorial District, Engr. Wada hails from Dekina in Kogi East Senatorial District.
Also cleared to contest is Barrister Natasha Akpoti of the Social Democratic Party (SDP).
Akpoti who hails from Okehi in Kogi Central Senatorial District, contested for the Senate of the district in the last general election but lost to Alhaji Yakubu Oseni of the APC.
Although, 51 candidates were cleared for the election, pundits however believe that the main contest will be between Governor Bello and Engr. Wada of the PDP.
Daily Trust Saturday reports that five of those cleared as governorship candidates are women while the rest are men.
It was also observed that seven women were cleared to contest the election as deputy governors.
Amongst others cleared for the election include Mrs. Justina Abanida of the African Democratic Congress (ADC); Mr. Ibrahim Itodo of ZLP, Mr. Idris Abegunde of NNPP, Mr Abu Omogani, UPC, Abdulahi Mohammed, Accord Party, Mr Abdulmalik Mohammed, HDP; Mr. Shaibu Sani Teidi, YDP and Mr. Dele Bello-Williams of the GDPN.
Others on the list are Mr. Umar Zekeri ABP; Mr. Chinga David, YPP; Mr. Ndako Tanko, ADP; Mr. Kabir Abdulwasiu, AAC; Mr. Abdulhamid Yusuf, AA; Mrs. Anne Oluwaseun , DPC; Mr Danjuma Mohammed, MRDD; Mr. Mohammed Dangana, NCP; Mr. Alonge Methusela, Mega Party; Mr. Niyi Ejibunu, AGAP; Mr. Abdulrazak Emeje, UDP, and Mr. Godwin Atawodi, DA.
Also on the list were Ephraim Medupin, AD; Mr. Musa Sadiq, APP; Mr. Victor Akubo, UPP; Mrs. Harirat Yakibu, LP; Mr. Alfa Oboy, JMPP; Mr. Atiku Isah, AN; Mr. Ayodele Ajibola, PRP; Sheik Ibrahim Jibril, APGA; Mr. Samuel Abolarin, ASD; Mr. Okpanachi Nichol, KOWA; Rev. Moses Dridu, PPN; Mr. Ikwueje Samuel, PDC, and Mr. Jimoh Yusuf, MAJA.
The electoral umpire also cleared Mr. Orugun Emmanuel of ANRP, Mrs. Grace Adepoju, MMN; Mr. Idris Isah, CAP; Mr. Sule Daniel, SNG; Mr. Mohammed Aliu, NPC; Mr. Noah Abiodun, PPA; Mr. Obagaye Raphael, BNPP; Mr. Yusuf Dantale, APM; Mr. Usman Imam, DP; Mr. Victor Akubo, GPN; Mr. Ukuwonu Joseph, PPN; Mr. Elegbe Amos, PDC; Mr. Usman Salifu, ANDP and Mr. Yusuf Nagari of APA.
Apart from the APC and PDP whose candidates emerged after a keenly contested primaries the other candidates emerged as sole candidates through affirmation and consensus.
Daily Trust Saturday reports that the INEC National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee (IVEC), Festus Okoye, had earlier announced that the commission would publish names of cleared candidates for the November election on Sept 13.
He explained that the publication of the personal particulars of nominees is for members of the public to make any claims and objections regarding these candidates, as required by law.
He urged political parties to be mindful of the timelines in the timetable and schedule of activities earlier released by the commission and requests strict compliance with them.