The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has declared that it will not issue any certificate of return to winners of Saturday’s Governorship & House of Assembly elections under duress.
PUNCH reports that INEC Chairman, Mahmood Yakubu made this statement during a meeting in Abuja where he also said that the commission will cancel results in polling units where card readers were deliberately not deployed by personnel;
“The commission is concerned that many of our materials, including ballot boxes, voting cubicles, voter registers, and Smart Card Readers were lost to acts of hooliganism and thuggery in the elections held two weeks ago. Most worrisome is the attack on electoral officials.
“Some of our staff were abducted and taken hostage in an attempt to disrupt elections or influence the outcome. In fact, some of the supplementary elections were caused by such acts of thuggery.
“I am confident that working together with the security agencies, we will consolidate the largely peaceful conduct of the Presidential and National Assembly elections while also taking decisive steps to deal with the minority of violators’ intent on disrupting the conduct of peaceful elections.
“However, the commission will not tolerate the act of holding our officials hostage and forcing them to declare winners under duress. Where such occurs, the commission will not reward bad behavior by issuing them Certificates of Return.”