The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has declared its readiness to commence electronic transmission of election results once it gets legal backing, adding that Nigeria is ripe for the deployment of the technology.
INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu in a release issued by the commission on Saturday, in Abuja, said that Nigeria has sufficient Information Communication Technology infrastructure for e-transmission.
“The Independent National Electoral Commission INEC believes that it has developed adequate structures and processes to successfully transmit election results electronically. Electronic transmission of results will improve the quality of election result management and that our engagement with stakeholders shows that the Nigerian public supports it. The technology and national infrastructure to support this are adequate. Consequently, if the choice was up to INEC, the Commission prefers to transmit election results electronically once the necessary legal framework is provided. This Position Paper will, among other things, try to elaborate on the reasons the transmission of election results electronically is both desirable and doable.”
According to Yakubu, the recent debates regarding e-transmission was not base on juxtaposing desirability and otherwise of using the innovation for elections in Nigeria.
He said, “Two guiding principles underlying the Commission’s application of technology are timeliness and relevance. These principles underscore the Commission’s believe that the time has come for Nigerian elections to transcend the cumbersome, tardy and vulnerable manual transmission and collation of election results to electronic transmission.”
INEC said it will not cede its constitutional duty of conducting the electoral and political process, adding that it has always created partnerships with various agencies of government, private sector and civic groups in its aims to establish a world-class electoral process for Nigeria.
The National Assembly had in July moved against electronic transmission of results in the amended Electoral Act. The action has generated a lot criticisms and ignited doubt on the credibility of general elections in 2023.