In a landmark decision on Friday 7th of May, the supreme court of Nigeria has decided that INEC deregisters seventy-four political parties from its register for their failure to win any election in the 2019 general election.
The decision which was made by a 7-man panel of the apex court headed by Justice Chima Nweze, upheld the decision of INEC to deregister the National Union Party (NUP). The apex court noted that the action of INEC was in line with the provisions of the extant Electoral Act and Constitution.
Before this, the NUP had challenged their deregistration by INEC in the Federal High Court and the Court Of Appeal. In both courts, the party lost and made a final appeal to the apex court. By upholding the deregistration of the NUP, the Supreme Court had sealed the fate of the remaining 73 political parties who still have their appeals pending in lower courts.
In a reaction to the judgement of the apex court, Dr. Leonard Nwenwa, president of the Inter Party Advisory Council (IPAC), praised the decision of the apex court for ending all speculations and will aid INEC to now focus on important issues and delivering a credible, free and fair election in the 2023 general election.
The Council of Nigerian Ethnic Youth Leaders also admonished the National Assembly to fast-track the amendment of the Electoral Act and Constitution to stall further registration of more political parties, implying that the remaining 18 political parties would be enough to cover all political tendencies in the country.