By Angela Atabo
Labour Party (LP) has alleged malpractices in the result collation of the Presidential and National Assembly elections on Feb. 25.
The National Chairman of the Labour Party, Julius Abure, said this at a news conference to address the serious matters arising from the 2023 election.
Abure said that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), by its conduct has caused Nigerians, particularly youths, who took part in this election with high hopes of a free and transparent process to hold strong feelings of disappointment and disillusionment.
“The Electoral Act was amended in 2022 for the electronic transmission of results after they are declared at the polling units.
“Nigerians participated in this process with the belief that the use of technology and adherence to the agreed electronic transmission of results to INEC servers at polling units would ensure a free, fair, and transparent elections.
“Yesterday, being Saturday, Feb.25, 2023, the very process which INEC assured Nigerians would be followed was truncated for whatever reasons.
“No matter what those reasons are, they are totally unacceptable to Nigerians and members of the party.
“INEC servers shut down and only presidential elections could not be uploaded on to the INEC server.”
Abure said that the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) did not work as planned.
“This failure no doubt has given room for manipulation of the presidential results being announced by the INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu at the Collation Centre in Abuja.
“We have sufficient documentary evidence that confirm that manipulations of the presidential elections results have occurred in Lagos, Rivers, Imo, parts of Edo State, Delta State, and some Northern States.
“These manipulations were carried out under the watchful eyes and connivance of police officers at the various election units and INEC offices.”
Abure said that 24 hours after the elections, INEC was yet to upload the authentic results adding that the excuse that the server was down was “flimsy and not tenable.”
He said that there were irregularities in the electoral process insisting that the integrity of INEC and its Chairman was now in doubt.
“We, therefore, call on Mr. President, Muhammadu Buhari, who promised Nigerians that he would leave a legacy of free, fair, and credible elections, assuring Nigerians, on several occasions, that their votes would count and that the process leading to the elections would be transparent and open.
“We are calling on you to live up to your promise to Nigerians as millions of Nigerians, particularly, the youth, participated in the 2023 elections with the hope that Mr. President would keep to his promise of a free, fair, and transparent election.”
Abure said that Labour Party also called on the INEC Chairman to ensure that the wishes of the people were upheld.
He said the party and its presidential candidates would not accept results which did not reflect the actual voting results obtained at polling units across the country.