Festus Okoye, the Independent National Electoral Commissioner (INEC) in charge of Information and Voter Education, has stated that results from trouble-ravaged areas will be treated according to the reports from presiding officers.
“If there are areas where ballot box snatching was reported, the presiding officer is expected to write a report on such incident to the Electoral Officer, stating the issues concern and how they fit into the guidelines.
“The report from the presiding officers from such units will help the commission to determine whether the results from such units will be cancelled or whether a rerun will be ordered or whether the unit will be awarded a zero score.
“Until such a report is received from the officers on the field, the commission will not make a decision on it.
“We have some Resident and National Commissioners and other senior staff of the commission on the field. They are doing their job in accordance with the law.
“We are not aware of such an incident (that Bello and INEC were forcing INEC staff to sign prefilled results) and if such an incident took place, there will be a report because we have some Resident Electoral Commissioners supervising a cluster of local government areas,” Okoye said.
While speaking after voting ended in the Bayelsa and Kogi elections, Okoye said: “Voting has closed in all polling units in the elections in Bayelsa and Kogi states. The commission deployed staff and materials in 4,352 polling units in the two states for the governorship elections, Kogi West Senatorial rerun election and Brass I State Constituency supplementary election in Bayelsa State.
“In addition, National Commissioners, Resident Electoral Commissioners and other staff members were sent to monitor and supervise the elections. These field officers are regularly submitting real-time reports to the commission on developments in the field.
“The commission is monitoring the processes. Reports from accredited observers and our officials in the field indicate that most voters who were willing to vote had the opportunity to do so. The commission delivered materials to its two State offices in good time and made adequate preparations for the movement of staff and materials to the various voting locations.”