By Abimbola Ogunnaike
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has confirmed registering Youth Party (YP), a new political party.
National Commissioner and Chairman Information and Voter Education Committee of INEC, Festus Okoye, made this disclosure in a statement issued on Thursday, 20 July, 2023 in Abuja.
Okoye recalled that the Youth Party (YP) was registered on 16th August 2018 by virtue of the judgment of the Federal High Court delivered on 16th October 2017.
“Following the commission’s decision to deregister some parties in accordance with Section 225A of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended), the Youth Party approached the Federal High Court and secured an Order restraining the commission from deregistering it.
“On appeal by the commission, the Court of Appeal set aside the Order of the Federal High Court and on further appeal by the party, the Supreme Court set aside the deregistration of the party,” he said.
The statement said based on the judgement of the Supreme Court, INEC interfaced with officials of the YP on the modalities for its operation based on the Constitution, the Electoral Act 2022 and the Regulations and Guidelines of the Commission.
“Consequently, the commission has recognised the Youth Party (YP) as the 19th Political Party in Nigeria with all the rights and privileges accorded political parties in Nigeria,”Okoye said.
With this development raised the number of registered political parties in the country to 19.
Recall that INEC had on 6 February 2020 deregistered 74 political parties for poor performance in the 2019 general elections and the subsequent re-run elections across the country.
INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, said in addition to the extant provision for the registration of political parties, the Fourth Alteration to the Section 225(a) of the 1999 Constitution, as amended, empowers the commission to deregister political parties.
During the 2019 general elections, 91 political parties participated in the exercise, while an additional party, Boot Party, was registered based on the order of a court after the election.