Yiaga Africa, a non-governmental organisation, has called on the National Assembly in Nigeria to swiftly legalise the electronic transmission of results from polling units.
The group also hailed the Independent National Electoral Commission for not tampering or altering the results of the just concluded Edo State governorship election.
Yiaga Africa in a statement reacting to the outcome of the election, said INEC performed better than previous elections, urging the agency to act more professionally in the Ondo State gubernatorial election.
The group said, “The National Assembly should accelerate reforms to the electoral act to legalize electronic transmission of results as the INEC results viewing portal deployed for the election has demonstrated how citizens’ access to polling unit results increases the integrity of the electoral process and encourages acceptability of electoral outcomes.
“Had the official results been changed at the ward, LGA or state collation centres, the official results would not have fallen within the Yiaga Africa WTV estimated ranges.
“Because the official results fall within the estimated ranges, governorship contestants, parties, and voters should have confidence that INEC’s official results for the 2020 Edo governorship election reflect the ballots cast at polling units.”
Yiaga Africa also congratulated the people of Edo State for maintaining peace through the voting and counting and result collation process across the state.
It, however, observed intimidation and harassment of observers, voters and polling officials by party thugs, which led to violent disruption of the voting process in some polling units and likely disenfranchisement of voters in the affected locations.
Yiaga Africa also condemned the shooting incident in Etsako Central LGA, which led to the death of a citizen.
The group stated that INEC must ensure compliance with COVID-19 protocols, recommending better training for INEC ad hoc officials.
“Yiaga Africa notes that the Edo governorship election is an improvement on Kogi and Bayelsa 2019 governorship elections and recommends that INEC takes all necessary steps to address challenges seen in the election before the Ondo State governorship election on October 10, 2020.
“Yiaga Africa encourages INEC to address logistical challenges observed relating to late commencement of polls for the upcoming gubernatorial election in Ondo State.
“In addition, INEC should ensure it enforces adherence to the COVID-19 health protocols in the Ondo election,” the group added.