The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in conjunction with the Independent Service Delivery Monitoring Group (ISDMG) yesterday in Abuja held a CSO Expert Group meeting on Electoral Reforms.
At the event, INEC’s Director of Voter Education, Publicity and Civil Society, Dr Oluwole Osaze-Uzzi who was representing the Chairman of INEC Prof. Mahmood Yakubuspoke on the myths ad facts surrounding the recent inconclusive elections.
“It is better the elections are inconclusive or they might as well be contested in court” he said.
Dr. Osaze-Uzzi said inconclusive elections did not begin today citing instances of elections that were inconclusive in the past such as the 1979 UPN argument in court challenging the presidential election of Awolowo vs Shagari, the 1999 Rivers state governorship election, the 2011 Imo governorship election and the 2014 Anambra governorship elections.
He said INEC is legally bound to declare inconclusive any election that is accompanied by violence and/or electoral malpractice claiming that doing otherwise will amount to a breach of the Constitution, the Electoral Act and the fundamentals of our democratic ethos.
He also said if the Commission doesn’t take the decision of declaring flawed elections inconclusive, it would mean a reward or an encouragement of violence and electoral malpractices.
According to him, the consequences of inconclusiveness in an election are finance, manpower, logistics, time and resources as all these would hve to deployed in the event of a rerun election.
The event ended on a high note and there was a question and answer segment.