The Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) has reduced the administrative fees for the processing of nomination forms for candidates contesting for elective offices for the July 22, 2017, Local Government elections in the State.
The decision of the Commission for a downward review of the administrative fees from #100,000.00, #75,000.00 and #50,000.00 to #50,000.00, #30,000.00 and #20,000.00 for the Chairmanship, Vice- Chairmanship and Councillorship candidates respectively followed an appeal made by members of the executive of the Inter- Party Advisory Council (IPAC) to the Commission for a total cancellation or reduction of the fees.
Members of the executive of IPAC led by their Chairman, Mr. Kola Ajayi, had pointed out that many political parties and their candidates who desire to contest for elective offices might not be able to do so if the fees were not cancelled or reduced by the Commission.
The Advisory Council had also appealed to the Commission for extension of the period for the submission of nomination forms by political parties on behalf of their candidates.
Responding to the appeals made by IPAC, the Chairman of the Commission, Hon. Justice Ayotunde Phillips, commended the body for employing dialogue in resolving the disagreement between the Commission and some political parties over the administrative fees, promising that the Commission would meet to deliberate on the requests of the Council with a view to finding an amicable resolution to the dispute which would be mutually acceptable to both parties.
It was in keeping with the promise of the Chairman that the Commission decided to reduce the administrative fees so as to create an atmosphere for a more participatory democracy at the Local Government level in the State.
The Commission has also extended the period for the submission of nomination forms by political parties to Saturday, 3rd June, 2017.
‘It is disingenuous to accuse everyone who calls for restructuring as trying to break up the county. History tells us that that kind of cheap blackmail will not work as long as the underlying reasons for the agitations persist.’
‘The biggest challenge seems to be that we seem to be allowing moderate voices on this issue to be drowned out by the reckless utterances of a few rabble rousers on all sides who may be tools in the hands of those who do not wish this country well. These are some of the people who arrogate to themselves the toga of spokespersons of our diverse groups.’
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