The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Professor Mahmood Yakubu has held an emergency meeting on election security with heads of security agencies at the INEC headquarters in Abuja.
The meeting comes on the heels of recent attacks on INEC facilities in Ebonyi, and some other states.
In attendance at the meeting was the National Security Adviser Babagana Mongunu, the Director-General National Intelligence Agency Ahmed Abubakar, the Acting Chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa, the acting Inspector General of the Police Alkali Usman.
Also in attendance were the representatives of the Chief of Defense Staff, as well as heads of the paramilitaries.
The NSA is the co-chair of the INEC inter-agencies elections security Committee.
The Chairman of INEC underscored the reason why this emergency security meeting is convened.
Before the commencement of the meeting, one minute of silence in honour of the late Chief of Army Staff Ibrahim Attahiru and those who died along with him during the ill-fated crash last Friday in Kaduna state.
The INEC Chairman outlines activities ahead of the Commission which includes the November 6th Anambra state governorship election and the continuous voters’ registration
Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Professor Mahmood Yakubu on Wednesday met with all Residents Electoral Commissioners (RECs) in the country condemning recent attacks and arson of the commission’s state offices.
The Chairman notes that the meeting is an emergency meeting to review some of the eventful developments since their last meeting.
He condemned the spate of arson and vandalism of state offices noting that the ugly trend has become very troubling to the commission.
According to the INEC Boss, the damage to INEC materials were total and are capable of affecting the Commission’s ability to conduct elections.
He appealed to host communities to see INEC properties as a national asset.
“Even in the recent events of arson and vandalization, many of them have demonstrated exceptional willingness to support the Commission.
“I wish to thank our host communities in all parts of the country and appeal to them to continue to see INEC property as both national and local assets to be protected.
“I will take briefings from across the country on threats to INEC facilities and deliberate on how best to protect them. I believe that we can dig deep and draw from the Commission’s longstanding partnership with communities in this regard, in addition to depending on the invaluable support of our security agencies,” Yakubu said.
He added that despite the challenges posed by these threats, “we are still positive that we can find lasting solutions to the spate of attacks on our facilities.”
He also informed the Commissioners about the ongoing efforts to expand the number of polling units, noting that the Commission has also completed all preparations for the continuous voters’ registration which will commence next month.
“The Commission conducted 28 out of 32 bye-elections across the country since the 2019 General Election, in addition to four end-of tenure Governorship elections in Bayelsa, Edo, Kogi and Ondo States.
“The by-elections were held in 20 States involving six Senatorial Districts, seven Federal Constituencies, 18 State Constituencies, and one Councillorship Constituency in Abaji Ward of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
“Indeed, it is now clear that the Commission must reconcile itself with the fact that elections have become an all-year-round undertaking in Nigeria.”
The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu on Thursday received his first jab of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, joining hundreds of Nigerians who have been vaccinated against the disease.
Photos of the vaccination were shared by the electoral body on its official Twitter handle.
“Hon. Chairman INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu receives first jab of COVID-19 Vaccine,” the commission said.
In its latest update, the NPHCDA said more people have continued to receive the vaccine jabs across all states of the country and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), except in Kogi State where authorities have yet to commence vaccination.
The latest figure indicates that 124,665 more eligible people took the vaccine jabs in the last two days, following the 513,626 total figure that was reported on Sunday.
It also shows an increase of 6.2 per cent of the proportion vaccinated, compared with the 25.5 per cent earlier reported.
A further breakdown of the figure reveals that Lagos has the highest number of eligible people who have taken the vaccine jabs with a total of 122,714.
The south-west state, which is described as the epicentre of the pandemic in Nigeria, maintains its status as the only state to have surpassed the 100,000 mark.
Professor Mahmood Yakubu has resumed as the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for a second term.
His resumption comes after his appointment was confirmed by the Senate and was on Wednesday sworn in by President Muhammadu Buhari before the commencement of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting.
His appointment and confirmation make him the first chairman of the commission to run a second term in office since 1999.
The Acting Chairman, Air Vice-Marshal Muazu, handled the affairs of the commission for a month while Professor Mahmood was waiting for his confirmation.
The Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC) has congratulated Professor Manhood Yakubu on his swearing-in for a second tenure as Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
In a statement by the National Publicity Secretary, Ambassador Agbo Major stated it is symbolic that his swearing-in came on a day that the Electoral Act amendment public hearing was conducted by the National Assembly.
“It is a wake-up call for him to pay greater attention to electoral reform particularly the deepening of technology in the electoral process as well as ensuring that every vote counts in Nigerian elections”.
He made remarkable progress in his first tenure and should endeavour to surpass that feat.
Amb. Major urged the INEC chairman to improve on that bearing in mind that the political destiny of the nation depends on the conduct of free, fair, credible, transparent, acceptable, and peaceful elections as power resides in the people.
“IPAC wishes him a successful second tenure in office”.
Professor Yakubu stated that INEC would continue to deepen the use of technology for elections and explore other ways in which the electoral process could benefit from technology.
He disclosed that the electoral umpire was working to ensure that materials needed for the elections were procured well ahead of time.
The screening of the former INEC boss comes a day after members of the red chamber considered the request of President Muhammadu Buhari to confirm the reappointment of Professor Mahmood Yakubu as the chairman of the nation’s electoral umpire.
They later referred the President’s request to the Senate Committee on INEC for further legislative action and asked the lawmakers to report back on Tuesday next week.
The Presidency announced Professor Yakubu’s reappointment as INEC chairman for another five-year term on October 27.
His reappointment is, however, subject to approval by the Senate.
Following the completion of his first term, Professor Yakubu handed over the leadership of INEC to Air Vice Marshal Ahmed Muazu who has been acting as chairman of the commission since November 9.
He was first appointed by President Buhari to oversee the activities of the electoral umpire in November 2015, six months after the Nigerian leader assumed office.
Professor Yakubu, who took over from Professor Attahiru Jega, was first appointed into office by President Buhari in November 2015.
Under him, INEC conducted many elections, including the 2019 polls which saw the President extending his stay in office for another four years.
In a statement dated October 27, 2020, the President’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, disclosed that his principal nominated Professor Yakubu reappointment in a letter addressed to the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan.
The President’s action, according to Adesina, is in accordance with the provision of Section 154 (1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).
But Professor Yakubu’s reappointment is subject to approval by members of the upper chamber of the National Assembly.
He assumed office on November 9, 2015, where he has been overseeing the activities of the electoral umpire.
Since the appointment of Professor Yakubu who took over from Professor Attahiru Jega, INEC has conducted many elections, including the 2019 polls which saw the President extending his stay in office for another four years, as well as some governorship elections in the country.
Presidential Election Tribunal has ordered Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Professor Mahmoud Yakubu to produce documents requested by the petitioners.
The Tribunal gave the order on Wednesday at the resumed hearing of the petition by People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Atiku Abubakar challenging the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari in the February 23, election.
Ordered alongside the INEC boss is the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in Zamfara State to produce documents requested.
They are to produce the documents by 12:pm on Thursday, July 18.
The court gave the order following a complaint by the PDP that the subpoena served on both INEC officials, since July 12 and 15, have not been complied with.
The Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal on Tuesday resumed hearing of petition by People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Atiku Abubakar challenging the election of President Muhammadu Buhari.
President Buhari’s legal team during the hearing played a video clip to support their claim on INEC’s position on the mode of transmission of election results.
Buhari’s counsel Alex Izinyon at the hearing played a video showing Professor Mahmoud Yakubu in an interview with Seun Okinbaloye of Channels Televisionin a clip tagged One-On-One Interview with INEC Chairman.
Professor Yakubu in the interview declined making a categorical statement that the commission will transmit results electronically from all parts of the country
The video was admitted as exhibit by the Tribunal.
Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu, has insisted that Mrs Amina Zakari, a national commissioner is not related to President Muhammadu Buhari.
Professor Yakubu said this in reaction to the controversy that trailed Mrs Zakari’s appointment as the chairperson of the collation centre committee for the general elections.
“Let me say categorically that she is not related to the President. She is from Jigawa State, the President is from Katsina State,” he told reporters in Abuja on Friday after a meeting with ASUU leaders.
The INEC chairman dismissed allegations that Zakari could help manipulate the outcome of the presidential election in favour of President Buhari.
“Let me state this very categorically, that the responsibility for managing the venue does not in any way involve the collation of results,” he explained.
“Under the Nigerian Constitution, I am the Chief Electoral Officer of the Federation and the Returning Officer in the presidential election. I am not going to share that responsibility with anyone in the commission.
“I am absolutely responsible for the coordination of the secretariat for the collation of results. But somebody has to prepare the venue for us to collate results.”
The appointment of Mrs Zakari as the collation centre chief has sparked mixed reactions since she was inaugurated by Professor Yakubu on Thursday.
Hours after the news broke, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) rejected the appointment and raised an alarm of alleged plot by the Muhammadu Burahi administration to rig the February polls.
In its reaction, the Presidency described the PDP allegation as false and stated that it was the opposition party that appointed her when it was in power.
With 78 days to the polls, the PDP chairman accused the police boss of working for the incumbent to arrest and intimidate its opponents.
He also alleged that the INEC chairman lacked the will and capacity to deliver free and fair elections next year.
The NEC meeting of the PDP is the first since the party’s convention held in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital where former Vice President Atiku Abubakar emerged as the party’s presidential candidate.
Similarly, the PDP leadership used the occasion to inaugurate its National Campaign Council for the general elections.
Mr Secondus is the Chairman of the committee which is co-chaired by the party’s presidential candidate and former vice president, Atiku Abubakar.
Atiku’s running mate and former governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi, is part of the council while Senate President Bukola Saraki is the director-general.
Former President Goodluck Jonathan, former Vice President Namadi Sambo, and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, are among the members of the council.
Others are Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu, PDP governors and lawmakers, as well as chieftains of the party.