INEC Speaks On 2019 Election Performance
The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu has defended the commission’s performance in the conduct of the 2019 general election.
Yakubu added that no election in any part of the world is ever perfect.
The INEC boss spoke against the backdrop of recent reports of the European Union Election Observation Mission to Nigeria and the joint election observation mission of the National Democratic Institute and International Republican Institute to Nigeria, which highlighted some of the flaws of the elections.
However, Yakubu while speaking on Monday with the Electoral Officers (EOs) of the commission for the 2019 election described Nigeria’s democracy as work-in-progress.
He added that people are free to criticise the outcome of the last general election and advise the commission when necessary.
He said: “I have consistently said that friends will criticise you, but your enemies will condemn you. But criticism is the basis to make any system work. No democracy, no electoral process is perfect. Every democracy is work-in-progress.
“So, feel free to suggest, advise on all issues relating to conduct of elections – the whole gamut. And you have the protection of the chairman that whatever you say will not be held against you.”
Yakubu described the electoral officials as the engine room of all elections as they are directly responsible for the execution of all policy decisions from the INEC headquarters.
Also speaking, INEC National Commissioner, Monitoring and Strategy, Alhaji Mohammed Lucky, told the EOs from the 19 Northern states in attendance that the review is an opportunity to review its policies and programmes during the last general election, which would serve as a roadmap to the 2023 general election.
He explained: “This process is essentially a sort of SWOT analysis involving identification of our strengths, performance, weaknesses or lapses, opportunities missed or taken, as well as impediments, bottlenecks and/or threats uncovered across all the processes before, during and the fallouts since the conduct of the 2019 general election.
“The commission is aiming to be comprehensive in its attempts to review all the issues connected to the general election; from preparation through execution and its aftermath, hence the review timetable and schedule of activities has provided for consultations at multi-levels.
“The commission over the past two weeks undertook state level reviews in each and every state of the federation. All the Electoral Officers (EOs) present at this meeting were part of their respective state’s review exercise.’’