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Can Someone Who's From Jos And Born In Imo Contest For Governorship Election In Imo?

The issue of eligibility to contest for political offices in Nigeria is often a matter of controversy and confusion, especially when it comes to the question of whether a person from one state can contest for an elective position in another state. Specifically, the question arises whether someone who is from Jos, but was born in Imo state, can contest for the governorship election in Imo state under the law.

According to the Nigerian constitution. A person who wishes to contest for the governorship election in any state must meet certain qualifications and conditions. Among these conditions is the requirement that the person must be a citizen of Nigeria, must have attained the age of 35 years, must be a member of a political party and must be sponsored by that political party.

However, the constitution does not explicitly state whether a person from one state can contest for an elective position in another state. The Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) also does not specifically address this issue. Therefore, the issue of whether someone from Jos, but born in Imo state, can contest for the governorship election in Imo state depends on the interpretation of the relevant laws and regulations.

One important factor to consider is the residency requirement for gubernatorial candidates. According to the Electoral Act, a person who wishes to contest for the governorship election in a state must have been ordinarily resident in that state for a period of not less than ten years before the election. This means that if someone from Jos, who was born in Imo state, has been living in Imo state for at least ten years, they may be eligible to contest for the governorship election in Imo state.

Another factor to consider is the issue of indigene and non-indigene. In Nigeria, there is a distinction between indigenes and non-indigenes of a state. An indigene is a person who is considered to be native to a particular state by birth, ancestry, or other factors. Non-indigenes are people who come from other states or regions. However, the constitution does not specifically define the term indigene. Therefore, the interpretation of this term depends on the relevant state laws.

In Imo state, for instance, the Imo State Local Government Administration Law recognizes indigeneship as a criterion for appointment and election into certain political offices. The law defines an indigene as a person who is of Imo State origin and whose father or mother is a native of any town, village or local government area in Imo State. This definition means that if someone from Jos, who was born in Imo state, has a parent who is an indigene of Imo state, they may be considered an indigene of Imo state and therefore eligible to contest for the governorship election in the state.

The question of whether someone from Jos, born in Imo state, can contest for the governorship election in Imo state under the law depends on several factors, including the residency requirement and the definition of indigene in Imo state. Therefore, anyone who wishes to contest for an elective position in any state should carefully examine the relevant laws and regulations to determine their eligibility.

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