Posted by News Express | 28 April 2016 | 2,712 times
The Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, on Wednesday urged politicians to abide by the rules guiding elections to avoid inconclusive elections.
Yakubu gave the advice in an interactive session with journalists in Abuja.
He, however, noted that inconclusive election did not just start with the present administration, adding that past administrations also recorded the development.
The INEC boss recalled that two governorship elections in Bauchi and Imo states were declared inconclusive in 2011 and in Imo, Abia and Taraba states in the 2015.
The chairman identified election violence, low rate of voters’ turn out during election as some of the factors responsible for inconclusive elections in the country.
“Ultimately, the responsibility of conducting free, fair, credible and conclusive election is for everybody, it is not just the responsibility of INEC.
“If we play our role and mitigate violence, our election will not be declared conclusive.
“It pains me that whenever we hold any election, there is no sleep for any of us in the commission until the election is over.
“Last week, we had election in Yobe, my heart was in my hands until after the election.
“Whenever violence is extensive in an election, we will continue to have inconclusive election.”
Yakubu said that while INEC would “never declare any election inconclusive for its own sake,” the Nigeria Constitution, the Electoral Act and election guidelines stated when an election should be declared inconclusive.
“I read as much as possible on what have been said about INEC declaring an election inconclusive, but I have not heard, read or seen anywhere where INEC has been accused of making such declaration outside the provisions of the laws.”
He said that the number of inconclusive election was increasing as elections in the country were becoming more competitive among political parties unlike in the past when one party would dominate an election.
“We must also observe that the margin of victory between the leading political parties in an election is now reducing as recorded in the recent elections in Kogi, Bayelsa, Rivers and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
“These are some of the reasons why we have inconclusive elections.”
He pledged that INEC would continue to protect the sanctity of Nigerian ballot as well make sure that elections were credible and conclusive in accordance with the electoral laws. (NAN)
•Photo shows INEC Chairman, Prof. Yakubu.
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