The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has lamented that 78, out of the 120 local and foreign accredited election observers, are yet to submit their reports 116 days after the 2019 general election.
INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, expressed disappointment during a meeting with Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) on the ongoing review of 2019 general elections in Abuja, yesterday.
He appealed to them to submit their reports in earnest, to enable the Commission aggregate their cumulative recommendations for the evaluation of the 2019 general election.
“As we are aware, the conduct of elections must continuously be improved, especially as new challenges emerge which must be addressed. This meeting was convened precisely to exchange ideas, share experiences and examine new options by which the conduct of elections in Nigeria can be enhanced.
“It is for this reason that the Commission accredits observers for all our elections, whether general or off-season. For the 2019 general election, 159 groups were accredited as election observers (120 domestic and 39 foreign).
“Collectively, these groups deployed 73,562 observers (71,256 domestic and 2,306 foreign). The breakdown of the accredited observers by gender shows that out of the 71,256 domestic observers deployed to the field, 51,320 (72%) are male while 19,936 (28%) are female. For foreign observers, out of 2,306 persons deployed, 1,711 (74%) are male while 595 (26%) are female.
“Nigeria is the first country in Africa to accredit PWDs as election observers in their own right. I want to place on record our appreciation and pledge for continuous support to Inclusive Friends, the Albino Foundation and all other organisations representing persons living with disabilities.
“A critical component of the requirements for accreditation of observers is the submission of reports and recommendations in the format provided for in Chapter 5 of the Commission’s guidelines for election observation.
“So far, less than 50 domestic and foreign observer groups have submitted their reports,” Yakubu disclosed.