The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says its has no plan to remove Amina Zakari as head of the collation centre committee for the general election, while also denying claims that Zakari would be involved in results collation.
Zakari was announced by INEC as the head of the committee yesterday when it inaugurated key committees for the election.
However, some Nigerians, especially the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) negated the move.
The opposition party had said “there is no way Amina Zakari will not allocate votes to her blood relation, President Buhari” with her as head of the committee.
However, speaking during a Channels TV programme today, Oluwole Osaze-Uzzi, INEC director of voter education and publicity, said Zakari’s committee is “basically in charge of the physical structure” (the International Conference Centre which is the collation centre).
“The chairman of INEC by virture of the electoral act is the returning officer of the country for the presidential election. It is he who decides the validity of votes and any issues in the election,” he said.
“She was also very involved in negotiating with the ICC management in 2015 for the use of the facility so her duty is to ensure the facility is ready. She has no role whatsoever with the process of collation,” he said.
Asked if INEC is “considering doing anything in terms of removing her,” he responded: “Removing her as the chairman of the committee to prepare the facility? That’s not an issue. It’s a needless controversy; not an issue at all.”