Kayode Ajulo, a constitutional lawyer has warned Nigerian politicians and political parties against disobeying the provisions of the Electoral Act 2022 during campaigns ahead of the 2023 general elections.
Mr Ajulo reminded candidates stated that the Electoral Act placed restrictions been placed to prevent the usual electoral malpractices that start even from the period of the campaign.
“Section 92 of the Electoral Act, 2022, provides for prohibition of certain conduct at political campaigns,” he noted.
Mr Ajulo explained that a political campaign or slogan should not be tainted with abusive language directly or indirectly likely to injure religious, ethnic, tribal or sectional feelings.
According to him, abusive, intemperate, slanderous or bias language or insinuations or innuendoes designed or likely to provoke violent reaction or emotions should not be used in political campaigns.
He said places designated for religious worship, police stations and public offices should not be used for political campaigns.
“By the above provision prohibiting the use of public offices for election campaigns, it is safe to submit that palaces of our traditional rulers that are maintained with public funds are categorised as public offices,” he stated.
The lawyer said a credible election remained the basis for conferring legitimacy on any government in a democratic dispensation.
Section 92(3) of the act says, “Places designated for religious worship, police stations and public offices shall not be used for political campaigns, rallies and processions; or to promote, propagate or attack political parties, candidates or their programmes or ideologies.”
Festus Okoye, INEC commissioner had earlier warned politicians against campaigning in churches, mosques and other public places.
The campaign train of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) comprises 325 members with Governor Udom Emmanuel as the director-general, while the campaign team of the All Progressives Congress (APC) consists of 442 members with President Muhammadu Buhari as chairman.
Campaigns for the 2023 elections kicked off today, according to the INEC timetable.
The major focus of the election is the presidential race involving Bola Tinubu (APC), Atiku Abubakar (PDP), Rabiu Kwankwaso (NNPP) and Peter Obi (Labour Party).