Yiaga Africa has commended the Independence National Electoral Commission (INEC) for improving its processes on the Election Day and compliance with the COVID-19 protocol by providing disinfectant/hand sanitizers in all polling units during the Ondo gubernatorial election.
The Co-Chairs Yiaga Africa WTV Working GroupYiaga Africa WTV Working Group, Ezenwa Nwagwu and Dr Aisha Abdullahi in a press statement issued on Sunday said that there are opportunities for improvement, calling on INEC to conduct a post-election audit on both the Edo and Ondo governorship elections in order to enable the Commission to assess its performance, identify operational areas for improvement and drive policy reforms to effectively plan for future elections.
They said given the significant rate of procedural infractions around counting of spoilt and counterfoil ballot paper, Yiaga Africa recommends better training for election day INEC ad-hoc officials.
While these infractions do not undermine the integrity of the process, they are a sign that election day officials’ training can be improved.
They said the National Assembly should accelerate reforms to the Electoral Act to legalize the effective deployment of technological tools to promote citizen’s participation and enhance transparency in the electoral process.
They further said INEC Result Viewing portal deployed for the election has demonstrated how citizens’ access to polling unit results increases the integrity of the electoral process and encourages acceptability of electoral outcomes.
They also commended the National Peace Committee (NPC) for responding to the call by stakeholders on the threat of violence as indicated in Yiaga Africa’s Pre-election observation report. The interventions contributed in no small measure to the peaceful conduct of the election.
“Yiaga Africa commends the dedication of the permanent INEC staff in Abuja and Ondo state who organized the election and the commitment of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members who served as poll officials.
“Yiaga Africa, through the Watching The Vote initiative, is committed to promoting more credible elections by providing independent information on the conduct of elections and independently verifying the accuracy of election results,” they said.
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