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Why APC Senators Vote Against Electronic Transfer Of Results



Details emerged on Wednesday on why senators elected on the platform of the ruling All Pro­gressives Congress (APC) voted against electronic transmission of election results last week.

Fifty APC senators and two of their counterparts in the main op­position Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) voted against the electronic transmission of election results in the forthcoming general elections, a decision that has been widely condemned by Nigerians.

The senators had insist­ed that the Independent National Electoral Com­mission (INEC) should be compelled to seek clearance from the Nigerian Com­munications Commission (NCC), while the National Assembly would have to approve the verdict of the NCC.

The Senate while con­sidering the Electoral Act 2010 Amendment Bill, had voted that “the commission (INEC) may consider elec­tronic transmission of re­sults, provided the national coverage is adjudged to be adequate and secure by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and approved by the National Assembly.”

While justifying the ac­tion of the lawmakers who voted against the bill, Sen­ate President, Ahmad La­wan, had said that the upper chamber took the decision in defence of about half of the Nigerian voters whose votes may not be counted with immediate deployment or application of electronic transmission of election results.

However, speaking exclu­sively with Daily Indepen­dent on Wednesday, one of the senators from the South- West, who was in Lagos for the Sallah break, said they jointly took the decision because they believe that Nigeria is not yet ripe for electronic voting and trans­mission of results.

While denying reports that the national leadership of the party or the presi­dency mandated them to vote against the report, the ranking lawmaker said pri­or to the division between the APC and PDP lawmak­ers, the APC lawmakers had earlier agreed that they were not in support of elec­tronic voting as it is suscep­tible to being hacked.

He said the system can easily be manipulated that the votes cast for a candi­date in APC can easily be manipulated on the system to go to PDP and vice versa.

“It is wrong for anyone to say that we were ordered by the presidency or the party leadership to vote against electronic voting and transmission of results. We are independent-minded and don’t forget, we have APC caucus in the Senate as well as PDP caucus”.

On our own, we have agreed that electronic vot­ing as good as it is has its own shortcomings which need to be addressed before it can be adopted. If not, it can lead to miscarriage of justice as somebody’s votes can be easily given to another.

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