INEC reassures Nigerians on BVAs functionality for gubernatorial elections
On March 18, Nigerians will go to the polls again to vote for Governors and State Assembly Representatives. This is after Nigeria’s election commission postponed the gubernatorial election, from March 11 citing the need for more time to reconfigure and deploy voting machines used in last month’s presidential and legislative elections.
The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INECV) Prof. Mahmood Yakubu has given re-assurance to Nigerians that the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) will this time around function optimally, particularly with regard to the electronic transmission of polling unit results to the INEC Result Viewing (IReV) portal.
Secrets Known recalls that when it mattered most, and in spite of repeated assurances by the national elections umpire, Prof. Yakubu, that the presidential election results would be transmitted transparently, the BVAS and IReV failed miserably. The platform failed to provide information that could aid election transparency.
Many in Africa had expected a credible Nigerian presidential election to offer renewed hope for democracy in the face of resurgent authoritarianism across the continent. In the words of the US ambassador to Nigeria, H.E Mary Beth Leonard, “the Feb. 25 election failed to meet the expectations of Nigerians”.
This begs the questions: Who should be held accountable for the millions of Naira that were invested into procuring the BVAS? How much was spent on procuring the BVSA and developing the IReV portal? Where were the BVAS procurement from (source)? Is there a possibility that the quality of the gadgets was defective?