Ezekwesili’s group condemns INEC conduct of presidential poll

The Obiageli Ezekwesili’s #FixPolitics, a citizens-led, research-based movement, has condemned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) handling of February 25 presidential and National Assembly election, saying that the conduct of the poll failed to meet the expectations of Nigerians.

A statement to the media on Friday signed by Anthony Ubani, Executive Director of #FixPolitics, noted that INEC’s failure to transmit election results from the polling units was against the Electoral Act and the Commission’s promise to conduct free and fair polls.

The statement stated that INEC’s failure to review the conduct of the poll before declaring the winner was disregard to the popular calls by Nigerians and candidates.

#FixPolitics pointed out that the Commission’s behaviour signalled that the election outcome was already predetermined, noting that the declared winner lacks legitimacy.

According to part of the statement, “We believe that INEC’s decision to declare the winner of the 2023 presidential election has raised severe doubts in the minds of Nigerian citizens and a global audience about the legitimacy of the process that produced the results announced by INEC.

“Elections are integral to the democratic process, and validity and legitimacy of elections are rooted in principles of transparency, obedience to the rule of law and the open compliance with due processes.

“In the absence of these principles of good governance, elections become a mere tool contrived to reach a predetermined end, leaving the citizens as hapless passengers and on-lookers in the governance of a commonwealth that is their patrimony.

“The beneficiaries of such a poorly managed and questionable process will lack the legitimacy and full support of citizens to govern effectively.

“We believe that INEC has erred in declaring a winner of the presidential election at this time when significant matters of electoral infractions that are of concern to most citizens are yet to be addressed.”

There has been wide criticism of INEC handling of February’s 25 presidential and National Assembly elections, the commission failure to transmit results electronically using the Bimodal Voters Accreditation System (BVAS) as proscribed by the Electoral Act has led to protests from parties, candidates and election observers.

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