INEC chairman, Mahmood Yakubu
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says parties aggrieved by the results of the presidential election should approach the court.
On Monday, Dino Melaye, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) agent, and other party agents, staged a walkout of the national collation centre in Abuja over INEC’s delay in uploading the presidential election results to the election results viewing portal (IRev).
Mr Melaye had also reportedly accused Mahmood Yakubu, INEC chairman of rigging the electoral process.
Subsequently, at a press conference held at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja, the Labour Party (LP) and PDP asked professor Yakubu to resign as the INEC chairman.
The parties also demanded that the presidential election be conducted afresh, saying it was not free and “far from being fair or transparent”.
Responding in a statement signed by Rotimi Oyekanmi, chief press secretary to the INEC chairman, the commission said the call for Yakubu’s resignation was “misplaced”.
INEC also said the allegation by Mr Melaye that the INEC chairman allocated scores to parties was “unfounded and irresponsible”.
“Also, contrary to the speculations by both parties, results emanating from the States point to a free, fair and credible process,” the statement read.
“There are laid down procedures for aggrieved parties or candidates to follow when they are dissatisfied about the outcome of an election. Such procedures do not include calling on the INEC Chairman to resign or for the election to be cancelled,” it said.
“To be sure, aggrieved parties are free to approach the courts to ventilate their concerns and wait for the matter to be resolved. Making inciting comments capable of causing violence or unrest is unacceptable.
“The 2023 General election processes are in their final stages of completion. It is only fair for aggrieved parties to allow the conclusion of the process and approach the courts with their evidences to pursue their cases.”
Writing by Abdullahi Lamino; Editing by Julian Osamoto and Tony Okerafor