By Dia Zamani
So much has been said why the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC Postponed the much anticipated General Elections in Nigeria. Some Nigerians have not only blamed incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan, others have accused the Nigerian Military of truncating the democratic process.
Beyond the headlines and hashtags, NewsWireNGR went further to read the report as presented by the INEC Chairman and here are the key findings of the Chairma’s submission for postponing the polls.
The presidential and National Assembly elections, earlier slated for Saturday, February 14, 2015, will now hold on Saturday, March 28, 2015. The governorship and state legislative elections will hold on April 11, 2015.
Jega made it categorically clear that “we are not being forced by anybody to take this decision. “This is a decision that we had to take by ourselves. They were not pleasant decisions to take but we had to take the decisions. Nobody has forced us; nobody has coerced us. We stand by this decision”.
The following are the key issues that stopped the commission from proceeding…
- *Over 45million PVCs collected
- *Non-guarantee of security
- *Training manual not ready
- *Presiding Officers yet to be trained.
- *700,000 ad hoc staff not recruited yet
- *PVCs still being printed abroad
- *RECs yet to print Voter Register
- *Printers for Register still in Abuja.
- *No full complement of ballot boxes
- *Fake printing ink sent to states from headquarters rejected
- *Many states yet to get balance of Card Readers.
- Apart from the security challenges presented to INEC, some of its vendors did not meet deadlines.
- Timelines that Jega and the Commission had set could not be met.
He made the announcement at a world press conference, invoking the provisions of the following in the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended: Section 76(2), Section 116(2), Section 132(2) Section 178(2).
He also quoted Section 25 of the Electoral Act 2010 as amended. The Commission Chairman explained that INEC was prepared but the security challenge and the need not to deploy men and materials when the security agencies had issued an advisory.
This shift in dates was announced yesterday by Professor Attahiru Jega, National Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.
It was learnt that whereas some Commissioners wanted the election management body to come clean, explain to Nigerians the true reasons for the postponement, especially based on its own serious challenges, some Commissioners simply wanted the security situation to be the sole excuse.