The ruling All Progressives Congress APC has kicked against the decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC to deploy the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System BVAS and the INEC Results Viewing Portal IReV, saying Nigeria is not ripe for the use of such technology.
This was as the electoral umpire insisted there was no going back on the deployment of the technology.
There had been allegations that the ruling party was sponsoring moves to oust the INEC Chairman because of his insistence to deploy greater technology to enhance the electoral process.
APC National Chairman, Senator Abdullahi Adamu stated this on Wednesday evening when he received a delegation from the Commonwealth Election Observation Mission.
He said; “First, I was privileged to serve as a senator. Our concern is how ready are we to deploy some of these technologies as regards transmission because we are taking a major step in transmitting election results in real time.
“To transmit results, every part of the nation Nigeria I’m not sure that the network covers it, I know that even in parts of Abuja there is no network and we have from now till February when in substantial parts of the country there is no electricity.
“INEC must assure us 100 percent that as at when due in transmitting results they are ready because they spoke about recharging batteries but we had in previous elections when it says it can’t recharge”.
National Organizing Secretary of the party, Ambassador Suleiman Argungu also kicked against the technology.
He said; “As a rider to what the national chairman just said about INEC transmitting results directly during the coming election, apart from the issue of electricity that is unstable, a lot of the villages and communities bordering other countries for instance my state Kebbi that is bordering two nations during the previous elections the network of Nigeria for all the networks, Glo, MTN, Airtel you can’t get them. If you want to get them you have to use the number of the other countries to reach them. So, during election I don’t see how transmission of result will work. I see it coming”.
Leader of the Commonwealth delegation and Political Adviser at the Commonwealth Secretariat, Lindiwe Maleleka, said the team was on pre-election meeting to Nigeria.
We are here on a pre-election assessment mission , a chance to meet with all major stakeholders involved in the election. We have interacted with civil society organizations, political parties, senior government officials and media representatives as well. It is an opportunity to understand the preparation for the election irrespective of what status . Based on these perspectives we will submit a report to the commonwealth secretary general who will then decide to deploy observers for the election on behalf of the Commonwealth secretariat. This is why we are here to interact with you, tap your perspective and the preparation for the election.
“We note the reforms that have been introduced in the lead up to this election: the electoral act, 2022, the new technologies which were introduced and I believe was tested in the Osun and Ekiti elections. We want to get your views about the new reforms in the build up to the next general elections because we are aware it will be rolled out for the election in February. Number two, what is your own preparation as a party . The primaries have already taken place and specifically in the Commonwealth we talk about political leadership being inclusive of women, youths and people with disabilities in the build up to the election”, said Maleleka.
Earlier, INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu had stated at a meeting with the Civil Society Situation Room and the Commonwealth delegation that there was no going back on the use of the technology.