INEC upturns NASS on electoral act, admits capacity for electronic transmission of election results

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) may have exposed the distortions of the All Progressives Congress (APC) lawmakers in Nigeria’s National Assembly on the amendment of the Electoral Act last Thursday. The commission on Saturday reiterated that it has the capacity to transmit election results electronically across the country even from remote areas.

APC senators and House of Representatives members had last week voted against section 52(2) of the electoral amendment act which specifies electronic transmission of result; the APC lawmakers rather inserted a clause that makes it a discretionary power of the INEC to decide at any time.

The lawmakers had opposed outright electronic transmission of results on a beguile argument that there is no network coverage in several parts of the country.

One of the Executive Commissioner at the Nigerian Communications Commission, Adeleke Adewolu, had on Friday attested before the members of the House of Representatives last Friday that the 3G telecommunications coverage required for transmission is available only in 50 per cent parts of the country.

The National Chairman and Commissioner for Information and Voter Education in INEC, Festus Okoye, in a media interaction on Saturday disputed all claims and false arguments on the lack of capacity for electronic transmission of election results across the country. Okoye maintained that the commissioned had transmitted election results electronically from remote areas in pat elections. He insisted that INEC has the capacity to adopt technology in transmitting election results across the country.

Okoye had declared: “We have uploaded results from very remote areas, even from areas where you have to use human carriers to access.

“So, we have made our own position very clear, that we have the capacity, and we have the will to deepen the use of technology in the electoral process.

“But our powers are given by the constitution and the law, and we will continue to remain within the ambit and confines of the power granted to the commission by the constitution and the law.”

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