The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Attahiru Jega, and his 12 national commissioners are locked in a crucial, and possibly the final meeting for the day, where a decision would be taken on whether to shift this month’s general elections or not.
The meeting with the national commissioners began after Mr. Jega concluded his consultation with the 37 Resident Electoral Commissioners [RECs].
The RECs, most of whom voted against postponement of the election, had insisted that Mr. Jega extract a commitment from relevant executive and security bodies to the effect that once postponement of the polls is approved, no further shift would be requested.
They also insisted it should be the prerogative of the commission to determine for how many days or weeks the elections should be postponed, and not that of an outside body such as the presidency and the security agencies.
It is not clear if Mr. Jega has extracted those commitments from the relevant authorities. But the INEC chairman has gone into another round of meeting with his national commissioners.
A source in INEC said it is at the ongoing meeting that a final decision would be taken.
“Once this meeting is concluded, the chairman and the commissioners will proceed to the media centre to brief journalists,” an insider said. “They are about taking their final decision now.”
INEC has all day been holding consultative meetings with political parties, civil society organisations and the RECs with a view to taking decision on whether to postpone the general elections scheduled for February 14 and 28 or not.
UPDATE: 10:42 PM: Meeting with national commissioners ends. Participants file out of meeting room and may brief journalists on decisions reached soon.