Group rates INEC’s result viewing portal high on election transparency
The Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room, a civil society organisation has hailed the introduction of result viewing portal by the Independent National Electoral Commission’s (INEC) as game-changer in free, fair elections.
Mr. Clement Nwankwo, convener of the group, who made the observation at the group’s review of the recent governorship elections in Nigeria, said that INEC had taken some lessons to improve the electoral process; adding that situation room was really quite pleased with the elections conducted in Edo and Ondo recently.
Nwankwo said it was gratifying to see results being uploaded in time in the result viewing portal by INEC.
“I think when you do have that, it increases transparency; so, we will urge INEC to continue to move in that direction. There are conversations on increased use of electronic system in elections for voting and so on; this is helpful, and I think we need to improve on it.”
The group further commended INEC on the peaceful conduct of Edo and Ondo states governorship elections, as there were high level of improvement in logistics, staff deployment, security conduct and use of smart card readers.
He also commended the police operatives for its conducts during the elections and expressed the hope that they continue to improve on their performance during elections.
Prof. Mohammed Kuna, special assistance to the INEC chairman, said that what was slightly different in the Edo and Ondo elections was that the commission did an election project plan.
According to Kuna, usually, the election project plan is done only during general elections and not for off-circle elections. He said that what that meant was that the entire project the commission wanted to implement during the Edo and Ondo elections were mapped out and responsibilities were shared.
He said that logistics arrangement for the elections in terms of recruitment, training and deployment was done meticulously adding that there was no case of people declining to work at the dying minute.
Dr Rufus Akeju, the Resident Electoral Commissioner for Ondo, said that the election was a success, even though 5,000 smart card readers were burnt.
Dr Johnson Alalibo, the Edo Resident Electoral Commissioner, said the election in the state was an improvement on previous ones. Alalibo said that there was need for INEC to deepen its use of electronic in elections to give the electoral process more credibility.
Prof. Anthonia Simbine, National Commissioner INEC, commended civil society organisations for the role they played in Edo and Ondo elections. Simbine said that a part of the commission’s success was due to the pressure CSOs put on INEC to do better. She said that security agents were very supportive in the process as they showed professionalism.
She reiterated the commission’s commitment toward working to introduce reforms that would address all bottlenecks to the smooth conduct of elections in the country.