Credits –

Yippee, elections are
finally here after the 6 week postponement and all the campaign wahala debates,
rallies and mud-slinging  electioneering.
 Obviously, the Presidential elections will
be a battle majorly between Goodluck Jonathan and Buhari while other state
governorship and national assembly elections will have various contestants from
other political parties who are not with the PDP or the APC have some political
As we all go out to cast
our votes, it is very important that we embrace peace and a free and fair election
procedure, please do not cause or promote any katakata disorderly acts and
if you insist on doing so, kindly remember that “any person who at an election
acts or incites others to act in a disorderly manner commits an offence and is
liable on conviction to a maximum fine of N500,000.00 or imprisonment for a
term of 12 months or both” – Section 128 of the Electoral Act
. So the
ball is in court, peaceful election on one hand and one year in prison with a
fine on the other, please choose wisely. 
There are many other
things you shouldn’t be caught doing on Election Day, these are stated in Section 129 of the 2010 Electoral Act, and
the law provides that:



     No person shall on the date on which an
election is held do any of the following acts or things in a polling unit or
within a distance of 300 meters of a polling unit –

Canvass for votes;

Solicit for the vote of any voter;

Persuade any voter not to vote for any
particular candidate;
Persuade any voter not to vote at the
Shout slogans concerning the election;
Be in possessionof any offensive weapon or
wear any dress or have any facial or other decoration which in any event is
calculated to intimidate voters;
Exhibit, wear or tender any notice, symbol,
photograph or prty card referring to the election;
Use any vehicle bearing the colour or
symbol of a political party by any means whatsoever;
Loiter without lawful excuse after voting
or after being refused to vote;
Snatch or destroy any election materials,
Blare siren. 
But that’s actually not
all, as the law further states that no one within the vicinity of a polling
unit or collation centre on the day of election should  convene, hold or attend any public meetings
during the hours of polling, unless appointed to make official statement,
neither shall anyone carry any badge, poster, banner, flag or symbol of any
political party.  Any person who
contravenes any of the provision of this section commits an offence and is
liable on conviction to N100,000.00 or imprisonment for 6 months.  Moreover, anyone who destroys or snatches
election material is liable to imprisonment for 24 months. I look forward to the
results of the elections and I am sure you do as well. While we wait, do share
this blog with everyone you know who will be voting on Election Day or will be
coming out to watch the polling.
Adedunmade Onibokun
Adedunmade Onibokun is a legal
practitioner, publisher and blogger based in Lagos, Nigeria. He holds an LLM in
International Business Law from the University of Bradford and publishes the
Nigerian law blog Legalnaija.




Credits – google
General elections are fast
approaching and political parties are concluding their primaries to elect those
who would be their flag bearers in the coming 2015 National elections. As we
enter into the last lap of selecting our government representatives, it is
important that we do not sell our votes, rather it is imperative that we choose
the best man or woman for the job. Also of utmost importance is that we all
observe proper discipline in election matters. This post is a first in a series
informing you about electoral offences as provided for in the Electoral Act
(2010), particularly the offences of buying or selling of voter’s cards.

Section 23 of the Electoral act
provides that; Any person who –
  • Is in unlawful possession
    of any voters’ card whether issued in the name of any voter or not;
  • Sells or attempts to sell
    or offers to sell any voter’s card whether issued in the name of any voter or
    not; or
  •  Buys or offers to buy any
    voters’ card whether on his own behalf or on behalf of any other person,
    commits an offence and shall be liable, on conviction, to a fine not exceeding
    N500,000.00 or imprisonment not exceeding two years or both.
Credits – google
By virtue of the above provisions,
anyone caught with the illegal possession of voters’ cards will be prosecuted
and if found guilty may end up behind bars or having to pay a hefty fine. Manipulating
the voter registration process is also an offence.
Section 24 further provides that;
Any person who –   
  • Knowingly makes a false
    declaration in his voters’ registration form.
  • Fails to provide
    information in their possession after demand under the act;
  • Signs a voter’s
    registration form in the name of another person;
  • Makes multiple
    registration; or
  • Procures a fictitious

Commits an offence and is liable on
conviction to a fine not exceeding N100,000 or imprisonment not exceeding one
year or both. Obviously there is jail time involved for anyone found guilty for
any of the acts mentioned above. Persons who also by duress or threats hinder
others from registering as a voter is liable on conviction, to a fine not
exceeding N500,000 or imprisonment not exceeding two years. 
Kindly share this post with others to
ensure that many people are deterred from carrying out any of the above
offences and if you discover anyone doing same, please report immediately to
the nearest police station. 
Adedunmade Onibokun, Esq
@adedunmade/ twitter


Cross-section of Nigerian Governor Forum (From

This is the second post in a
series of articles informing about the requirements for contesting elections in
Nigeria. Last time, I wrote on the requirements for contesting presidential  elections in Nigeria, while this post will be treating the constitutional
requirements for contesting Governorship elections in Nigeria. 

The position of a State of
Governor is provided for by the Constitution in Section 176. It provides that –
there shall be for each State of the Federation a Governor and the Governor
shall be the Don Dada Chief Executive of that State. The only persons
qualified to be Governors are- Citizens of Nigeria by birth; persons who have
attained the age of 35 years; members of a political party & sponsored by
that party; and such candidate that has been educated to at least School
Certificate Level or its equivalent. 

It should also be noted that the
following persons are not qualified for election to the position of the

  • Persons who have voluntarily
    acquired the citizenship of another country;

  • He has elected to the position 2
    previous times;

  • A lunatic or person of unsound

  • Persons under a death sentence;

  • Persons who have been convicted
    and sentenced for an offence involving dishonesty within the past 10 years of
    the election or has contravened the Code of Conduct;

  • An undischarged bankrupt;

  • Persons employed in public

  • Member of a secret society;

  • Persons who have been indicted
    for embezzlement or fraud; and

  • Persons who presented a forged
    certificate to INEC.

It is the duty of INEC to appoint
the date for the elections though such elections must be held on a date not
earlier than 60 days and not later than 30 days before the expiration of the
term of office of the last holder of the office. Section 178 states that a candidate
for the Governorship elections shall be deemed to have been duly elected where,
being the only candidate nominated for the election –

  1. He has a majority of YES votes
    over NO votes cast at the election; and 
  2.  He has not less than one-quarter
    of the votes cast at the election in each of at least two –thirds of all the
    local government areas in the State, but where the only candidate fails to be
    elected in accordance with this provision of the law, then there shall be fresh

Where there are 2 or more
candidates, one will be deemed duly elected if –

  • He has the highest number of
    votes cast at the election; and

  • He has not less than one –quarter
    of all votes cast in each of at least two-thirds of all the local government
    areas in the State.

If no candidate is elected by
virtue of the foregoing provisions, there shall be a second election at which
the only candidates shall be – the candidate who secured the highest number of
votes and one among the remaining candidates who secured majority of votes in
the highest number of local govt areas.
Section 185 states that the
Governor shall not begin to perform the functions of office until he has
declared his assets/liabilities and subscribed to the oath of allegiance and
Oath of office.  
Adedunmade Onibokun, Esq.