– A document by INEC official has shown that the commission uploaded voters’ accreditation to server during February 23 presidential election
– The candidate of PDP and President Buhari’s main challenger at the poll, Atiku Abubakar, had said he won the election based on the information he obtained from INEC’s central server
– INEC’s national secretary, Rose Oriaran-Anthony, was quoted to have said that the commission transmitted voters’ accreditation data to a server
A report by the Premium Times revealed that an internal circular of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) indicated that the commission transmitted voter information from smart card readers to a central server during the 2019 presidential elections.
Legit.ng gathered that the document, which was first posted on social media by Reno Omokri, a former aide to ex-president Goodluck Jonathan, on Wednesday afternoon, July 10, carried a directive from national secretary of INEC, Rose Oriaran-Anthony, to other senior officials of the commission on challenges recorded in transmitting voter accreditation data to a server.
“The commissioner has observed, with deep concerns, the number of smart card readers (SCRs) that do not have data of accredited voters in the just concluded presidential/NASS elections nationwide,” Oriaran-Anthony was quoted to have said in the March 25 letter to all resident electoral commissioners (RECs) across the country.
It was reported that the top electoral officer also noted in the memo that 4,786 smart card readers did not have data on accredited voters following the presidential election on February 23, representing about four per cent of the total SCRs deployed for that exercise.
“Attached is the chart, showing the PUs (polling units) not uploaded to the SCR accreditation backend, for each of the states,” Oriaran-Anthony added in the memo.
She then directed all concerned RECs to liaise with their technical and electoral operations officials to clarify why the card readers failed to upload accreditation data on election day. They were given until March 28 to submit their replies.
The online new platform noted that a spokesperson for INEC, Festus Okoye, declined several attempts to get his comments on the internal memo.
The document marks yet another pressure on the electoral body over whether or not it used a central server to collect data from polling units across the country on election day.
The commission has insisted that it was not in possession of any central server for the conduct of the election, saying doing so would have contradicted the Electoral Act.
INEC maintained the position despite overwhelming claim to the contrary by some of its presiding officers in the election.
Many of the presiding officers and their subordinates have since sworn affidavit to testify against the commission in favour of Atiku Abubakar, the PDP’s candidate and main challenger to President Muhammadu Buhari, who was declared winner of the election.
Abubakar’s legal team said the opposition leader won the presidential election but was rigged out by INEC officials who allegedly compromised to return Buhari to power.
The elections tribunal denied Abubakar’s request to inspect INEC’s server last month, saying granting such an order would presuppose that the court had ruled that the server actually existed.
The court deferred pronouncement on the server until a proper argument has been made by both teams in the substantive petition. The petitioner began calling its witnesses last week.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that one of the witnesses presented by Abubakar and the PDP at the tribunal, Peter Uzioma Obi, said he and some others staff of INEC were trained to transmit election result on server.
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