The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said the newly appointed Resident Electoral Commission (REC) from Akwa Ibom State, Etekamba Umoren, will not be sworn in yet.
INEC’s National Commissioner and Chairman of Information and Voter Education, Sam Olumekun, made this known in an interview on Friday.
Olumekun stated that Umoren will not be in office until the tenure of the current REC from the state, Monday Udo-Tom, expires in January 2024.
Speaking with Premium Times, he said: “The new REC can only assume duties after the expiration of the tenure of the current REC whose term expires later.”
Also speaking, Rotimi Oyekanmi, the spokesperson to the INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, said it would be unusual for two RECs from the same state of origin to serve at the same time.
He stated that the tenure of the newly appointed REC from Akwa Ibom would only take effect after the tenure of the current one ends in January next year.
Oyekanmi added that the current appointment of RECs ahead of the expiration of the other’s tenure could be a good precedent.
He said: “The tenure of the current REC from Akwa Ibom State will expire in January next year. The tenure of the new REC from the same Akwa Ibom State will only take effect after the end of the tenure of the current one.
“With the benefit of hindsight, this is actually good practice. It is better to have a REC-in-waiting than to allow a reigning REC’s tenure to expire before scrambling to appoint a new one.”