We’ll address proven cases of infractions ahead of March 11 polls, says INEC 

The chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu has assured all proven cases of infractions from February 25 presidential and National Assembly election will be redressed in line with the provisions of the law.

The INEC boss also said that any staff of the commission, whether regular or adhoc found to have compromised the last exercise will not be allowed to participate in the Governorship and Assembly elections, while also directed that disciplinary action be initiated against such staff immediately.

Yakubu, while speaking at a meeting with Resident Electoral Commissioners, said that the commission has received reports from the State offices as well as complaints and petitions from political parties and candidates.

He said: “Where infractions of any kind are proven, there will be redress. I must add that any action taken by the Commission is without prejudice to the rights of parties and candidates to seek further remedy as provided by law”.

“As we we approach the Governorship and State Assembly elections, we must work harder to overcome the challenges experienced in the last election. Nothing else will be acceptable to Nigerians.

“All staff found to be negligent, whether they are regular or ad hoc officials, including Collation and Returning Officers, must not be involved in forthcoming elections. RECs must also immediately initiate disciplinary action where prima facie evidence of wrongdoing has been established.”

Speaking on logistics which became a problem in some States, he blamed the delay in deployment of staff on the centralisation of the exercise in some areas.

According to him: “Election Day logistics must be finalised days before the election and handled by the Electoral Officers (EOs) at Local Government level. This has been our standard practice. Centralising the process as was done in some States resulted in delayed deployment of personnel and materials and late commencement of polls.

“RECs will be held responsible for any tardy arrangement or the failure to deploy electric power generators to collation centres or polling units where such facilities are needed. The Commission has enough facilities in all the States of the Federation. Failure to deploy them is simply inexcusable.

“Refresher training must be conducted for ad hoc staff that participated in the last election. Where they are replaced for good reason, they must be properly trained so that processes are not delayed or compromised at any stage.”

On technology for the election, he said: “the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) will once again be deployed for voter accreditation and result management. The deployment of BVAS has gone a long way to sanitise voter accreditation as can be seen from the result of recent elections.

“Since last week, the Commission has intensified the review of the technology to ensure that glitches experienced, particularly with the upload of results are rectified. We are confident that going forward the system will run optimally”.

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