Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, during his confirmation by the Senate at the National Assembly in Abuja yesterday.
The newly appointed chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu yesterday said he would consolidate on the successes recorded by his predecessor, Professor Attahiru Jega.
“I want to assure the distinguished Senators and Nigerians that under my watch no election will be won and lost at the INEC headquarters or at the Commission’s offices in states, “ Yakubu said when he appeared before the Senate for confirmation.
Yakubu was later confirmed by the Senate alongside five Commissioners of the Commission.
The commissioners confirmed are: Amina Bala Zakari (North-west), Dr. Antonia Taiye Okoosi-Simbine, (North-Central) Alhaji Baba Shettima Arfo (North-East), Dr. Mohammed Mustapha Lecky (South-South) and Mr. Soyebi Adedeji Solomon (South-West).
According to him, “the success of any election depends on the ability of the Commission to organise, arrange elections properly and in advance. But in this country, we have this culture of last minute and rush.”
On electronic voting, he said: “It is desirable and inevitable. If you look at the trajectory from the last 10 years, the voters register comes in an electronic form. Initially, it was just a register, then photographs were added. And in the last election, both photographs and biometric were added.”
On Diaspora voting, he said the process for Nigerians abroad to vote must be quicken.
Speaking after the confirmation, Senate President Bukola Saraki said the new INEC boss and five Commissioners possessed the credibility to consolidate on the successes recorded in the electoral body.
Meanwhile, Prof. Jega has recommended a thorough reform of the electoral process before the 2019 general elections to correct mistakes of the past.
He was speaking yesterday in a lecture titled: “Electoral reforms in Nigeria: Challenges and prospects” at University of Abuja public lecture series.
He also advocated the implementation of the recommendations of the Justice Muhammed Uwais Electoral Reforms Committee.