The Independent National Election Commission, (INEC) has dismissed insinuations that all elections conducted since the assumption of office of the current chairman of the commission, Mahmood Yakubu, have been inconclusive.
The commission said it conducted 139 elections which were concluded.
The reaction was contained in a press statement signed and issued Tuesday by the acting secretary to the commission, Musa Adamu, in response to a statement credited to the outgoing president of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Augustine Alegeh.
Mr. Alegeh reportedly made the remarks at the opening of the Annual General Conference of the Nigerian Bar Association in Port-Harcourt, Rivers State, on Sunday, 21st August 2016.
“Mr. Alegeh was reported to have rebuked the Commission for having conducted one hundred and thirty six (136) inconclusive elections in the past one year under the watch of Professor Mahmood Yakubu,” the statement said.
“The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) seldom takes issues with members of the public. But the President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) is a highly distinguished and respected and respected person.
Besides, he represents a knowledgeable and influential constituency. His pronouncements are therefore weighty and could pass for the gospel truth.”
The statement said: “The Commission has thus far concluded 139 elections (118 at first ballot and 21 after supplementary) out of a total of 163 scheduled elections and that 22 elections were suspended due to violence while 2 elections are sub-judice”.
“This shows that 72.3 percent of the elections were concluded at the first ballot, 21.8 percent of the inconclusive elections were concluded after supplementary; 1.2 percent are pending; while 13.4 percent were suspended in Rivers state due to violence.”
The commission said Mr. Alegeh’s pronouncement was “ill informed”, “misplaced and undeserved”.
The commission, while assuring that it remained unwavering and irrevocably committed to delivering elections that are free, fair and credible, said “inconclusive elections are caused by violence and over-voting and that the notion of inconclusive election is not strange to our law (see Section 26 and 53 of Electoral Act 2010 as amended)”.