2023: INEC To Meet With NCC On Tuesday Over Electronic Result Transmission – Yakubu
Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, has disclosed that plans are underway to meet with the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) over the issues of electronic transmission of election results at the polls next year.
Naija News gathered the INEC chair revealed that the commission is set to meet with NCC on Tuesday 6 December to resolve the issues surrounding the ability of telecommunication companies to transmit results.
Yakubu, who made the disclosure on Friday at a One-Day Strategic Interactive session with journalists in Lagos noted that the commission is already working to resolve election result issues that may arise from blind network spots.
The move by the electoral umpire follows agitation by some quarters on the possibility of using the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) in poor network areas.
Naija News reported on Monday that the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON) declared that it is ready and capable to transmit the results of the 2023 general election electronically.
The association noted that the quality of telecoms architecture available in the country can make the transmission of results possible during the polls.
The Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the association, Ajibola Olude told Punch that contrary to the fears from some quarters, the nation’s telecommunication infrastructure had matured to the level it could transmit election results in 2023.
He said “We are ready for electronic transmission of results. Our network has matured to the level that it can be used for result transmission. As regards the access gap, you can see that the NCC has been pursuing rural telephony vigorously.
“We have the technology, and our network is mature enough to be used for poll results transmission. Areas that do not have the Internet can use SMS technology to send results in real-time to probably the capital of the state to update the result. I don’t think there will be a problem using a telecommunication network to transmit election results.”
Reaction from the telcos followed an outburst from the camp of All Progressives Congress ( APC) leadership on the BVAS and e-transmission of results.
Naija News recalls that APC National Chairman, Abdullahi Adamu, had expressed doubts over INEC’s capacity to deliver a credible election using the BVAS and the Results Viewing Portal, otherwise known as the electronic transmission of election results.
Also, the APC National Organising Secretary, Suleiman Argungu, expressed fears saying stable power supply might be one of the obstacles facing the innovation.
However, Naija News learnt that in the midst of all the fears, the INEC boss has assured Nigerians of the effectiveness of result transmission in the 2023 general elections using the BVAS.
Yakubu explained that its meeting with NCC on Tuesday, is to work around the mobile network issues that might affect the transmission of results.
The INEC chairman said the agency was liaising with NCC to make sure there would be a seamless transmission of results in the 2023 elections.
He submitted that “INEC has identified blind spots (where there are poor or no networks) and we are working to make sure there won’t be any problem.
“We are working with the NCC to make sure we transmit from blind spots. They are the network regulators and they will be very vital to that.
“We are making sure and working hard so that we transmit freely all around the country.”