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Laolu Akande: INEC damaged trust by not transmitting presidential election results electronically

Laolu Akande: INEC damaged trust by not transmitting presidential election results electronically
September 09
10:57 2023

Laolu Akande, former presidential spokesperson, says the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) emerged from the February 25 presidential election as “damaged goods”.

He added that the electoral umpire broke its trust with the citizenry by not electronically transmitting the results of the presidential contest.

Mahmood Yakubu, INEC chairman, had said in the buildup to the election that the commission had developed the requisite infrastructure to successfully transmit election results electronically.

However, the commission failed to transmit the results of the presidential election electronically, citing technical glitches. 


The development elicited ample umbrage from opposition chieftains and from citizens across the land.

It was also one of the grounds on which the election of President Bola Tinubu was challenged at the petitions tribunal.

On Wednesday, the tribunal dismissed all the petitions from Atiku Abubakar, presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the election; and those from Peter Obi, presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP).


The five-member panel of justices ruled that non-electronic transmission of polling figures in real time was not a breach of the electoral act, and upheld Tinubu’s victory.


Speaking on Politics Today, a Channels Television programme, on Friday, Akande said even though the commission did not break any law by not electronically transmitting the results of the election, it has eroded the trust it had with the Nigerian people.

“It is important to establish something we cannot basically run away from. INEC came out of this election as a damaged good,” he said.


“There is no doubt about that. INEC itself set up a standard. INEC determined the guidelines. INEC committed to the people of Nigeria that this is how we are going to declare the result of this election.

“In fact, the chairman of INEC went abroad and said, ‘What we are going to do is that these results, when we get it, we would put it on IReV in real time.

“But guess what? When it was time for INEC to fulfill its guidelines — for certain reasons…we could talk about that–  INEC failed to do what it said it would do.

“Now, it is right that if you look at the law, and I think the judges also affirmed, INEC has not really broken the law. But INEC has broken the trust of the Nigerian people.


“It is a problem for political legitimacy for people who came out of that system. So, there is a lot of cynicism, there is a lot of distrust [about those declared winners].

“INEC is responsible for that.”


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