The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has postponed the general elections by a week.
This means that the Presidential and National Assembly elections, initially scheduled for today, February 16, will now hold on February 23, while the governorship and state houses of assembly elections will take place on March 9.
INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, announced the decision at a short press briefing at 2:44 am on Saturday morning.
He said, “Following a careful review of the implementation of its logistics and operational plan, and the determination to conduct free, fair, and credible elections, the commission came to the conclusion that proceeding with the elections as scheduled is no longer feasible”.
The press briefing followed a crucial meeting of the INEC boss with top officials of the commission which started late on Friday night.
The very important meeting had in attendance all 12 national commissioners of INEC.
The polls were shifted despite earlier assurance by the INEC boss that the commission has no plan to postpone the elections.
Professor Yakubu’s announcement has put an end to speculations that the electoral umpire would shift the polls after encountering challenges in the distribution of electoral materials.
While the INEC officials were holding the meeting, the Chief Press Secretary to Professor Yakubu, Mr Rotomi Oyekanmi, had informed reporters that the commission had taken a decision about the elections.
He, however, declined to give the details of what was discussed at the meeting, saying the INEC chairman was billed to address Nigerians later after the meeting.