Atedo Peterside, Founder/CEO of Anap Foundation and Stanbic IBTC Bank, has expressed doubts on the Independent National Electoral Commission’s INEC’s transparency over off-season elections in the country.
The founder said he doubts INEC’s ability to ensure that the off-season elections coming up in Kogi, Bayelsa, Imo, Ondo, and Edo States are going to be true reflections of the will of the people.
Peterside stated this in a statement via his X account, formerly known as Twitter, on Monday.
He stated, “Many a true word is said in jest. What manner of Governorship Elections does @inecnigeria have in store for us in Kogi, Bayelsa, Imo, Edo, Ondo etc? Will their staff brag at the Polling Units that there is no plan to upload the results on IREV? Will thugs decide who gets to vote?”
Peterside’s comment over INEC’s transparency comes after INEC had come under criticism for the huge amount of money allocated to the commission to conduct a peaceful, free, and fair 2023 general elections.
However, Peterside’s tweet has sparked mixed reactions among his followers.
An X user, @Madam President, was more critical of the process, urging Nigerians, especially the opposition political parties, to separate themselves from using emotions to handle election issues.
She tweeted, “Sadly, this is why we are not doing very well in our quest for good governance in Nigeria.
The opposition is largely emotional, have no alternative reasoning, do not interrogate issues like they mean to give the ruling party a real competition.
“It is all about ‘subs’, insult, anger for no reason, abuse, propaganda and often downright mischief. Should it not be more reasonable to study INEC rules and follow them dutifully, have your agents on site to record and report on the elections at every ward, than to expect to impugn an election by propaganda and bully tactics.
“Have the opposition learnt much since the last elections? Are they ready for the oncoming State elections? Your response to Mr. Atedo is apt. It is indeed silly jest like we have now come to expect from the opposition parties.”
Another user Ayo Obe tweeted, “It’s a silly jest. Let the political parties get their act together and ensure that they have properly trained party agents at each polling unit.
“Because while INEC will still upload results to #IReV, collation of results will be done manually, using the signed results sheets.”
Meanwhile, in a recent communiqué, INEC has promised Nigerians that these off-season elections would indeed be credible, as they have made plans to use the Bimodal voter accreditation system (BVAS) and result viewing portal (iREV).