“Don’t Accept Donations Above N50m” – INEC Warns Candidates

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has stated that parties and candidates participating in the 2023 general elections are not to contribute or accept donations above N50 million.

The electoral umpire stated this in the guidelines for the conduct of political rallies, processions and campaigns as well as finances and election expenses of political parties, candidates and aspirants.

It said: “The maximum amount of money or other assets that an individual, a group of individuals or an entity can donate to a political party or aspirant for an election shall be N50 million.

“A political party shall not accept any monetary or other contribution which is more than N50,000,000 except it identifies and discloses the source of the contribution to the Commission.

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“Contribution to candidates by an individual or entity shall be from 150 days allowed for campaigns to election day. Contribution to aspirants by an individual or entity shall be from the date notice of the election is published to the conclusion of party primaries.”

The guideline further explained: “Election expenses of political party mean all expenses in cash or otherwise incurred by a political party or candidates as well as party primary expenses of aspirants from the date notice of election is published to the day of election only.

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“They exclude expenses incurred before the publication of notice of election. Election expenses of off cycle or other elections shall relate to period between publication of notice for particular election by the Commission and date of election. The election expenses of a candidate shall not exceed the limits prescribed in the Electoral Act, 2022.”

It also emphasised that the election expenses of a political party shall be in three parts; the management of aspirants and party primaries, management of candidates and conduct of elections and miscellaneous election expenses.

“The election expenses of a Political Party for management of Party Primaries shall not exceed two-third (2/3) of the limits prescribed for candidates expenses in the Electoral Act, 2022 for respective elective positions.

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“The election expenses of a political party for conduct of elections shall not exceed two-third the limit of election expenses of each Candidate multiplied by the number of Candidates the Political Party shall sponsor in a particular election for elective positions,” it clarified.

The guideline also noted that the miscellaneous election expenses of a political party shall include but not limited to; re-election cases against the party, post-election or election petitions and re-mobilisation of party members after elections.

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