The European Union observation mission and some civil society groups have called for a probe of severe cases of violence and attempted manipulation in Saturday’s elections in some states.
The EU Chief Observer, Mr Santiago Fisas, said that despite lack of evidence of centralised systematic fraud at the polls, some attempts at manipulations were observed which necessitate further investigations by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
For the Coordinator of Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room, Mr Clement Nwankwo, multiple cases of electoral misconducts in Abia, violence in Rivers State and partisan interference in Akwa-ibom call for scrutiny of final collated results from the three states.
The European Union observer group to the 2015 general elections in Nigeria has described President Goodluck Jonathan’s conduct as a shining example that other world leaders should emulate.
Leader of the delegation, Mr Santiago Fisas, gave the commendation after holding a closed-door meeting with the out-going President in his office.
The five-man delegation was at the Presidential Villa to congratulate Dr. Jonathan for allowing a peaceful electoral process and conceding defeat.
The group, which came to present the preliminary report on the outcome of the elections, said that the fact that President Jonathan conceded defeat saved Nigeria from degenerating into chaos as predicted by many pessimists.
The meeting with the president lasted for about 30 minutes before Mr. Fisas spoke to State House correspondents, congratulating him for exemplary display of statesmanship for the entire world to see.
The leader of the observer group said that many political watchers never expected that Nigeria was going to come out without bruises following the elections.
He also gave kudos to the Nigerian people.
The EU observer group says they will be back in Nigeria in July for the full presentation of the report on the elections.
The Chief Observer of the European Union Election Observation Mission (EU EOM), Mr Santiago Fisas, on Tuesday noted that the EU will monitor elections in Nigeria despite the six-week delay.
Mr Fisas also acknowledged the different views about INEC’s postponement of the general elections to 28 March and 11 April, following statements by respective security chiefs who unanimously reiterated that safe elections could not be guaranteed at this time.
“We are seriously concerned at this delay and the reason given. Security is critical but must not be political. People have to be able to vote, elections have to be held so that government is accountable. We look to the security agencies to give full support to INEC and all the people of Nigeria in the holding of polls on 28 March and 11 April” said Fisas.
Mr Fisas further commended the “peaceful reaction so far to the postponement and will continue observing the electoral process. We encourage all political parties, candidates, supporters and other stakeholders to consider the extra time as an opportunity to further prepare for the election days. More voters can collect their Permanent Voters Cards, candidates can elaborate on their proposed policies”.
He further noted that “for citizens to have confidence in the electoral process, the polls should not be further delayed. People need to know this and to see what is being done by the different authorities to make this happen. We will be here in different parts of the country observing the next crucial weeks in the run up to the election and beyond.”