Admin l Wednesday, March 08, 2023
IKOYI, Lagos, Nigeria – Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos has ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to transmit election results in the governorship and house of assembly election slated for March 11 directly from the polling units.
Justice Peter Lifu granted the relief in the suit filed by the Labour party governorship candidate in Lagos, Mr. Gbadebo Rhodes Vivour and 40 other opposition parties in Lagos.
Parties filed the suit following the failure of INEC to transmit results directly from the polling units during the Presidential and National Assembly elections held throughout the federation leading to stolen mandates and confusion in many places.
The judge held that contrary to INEC’s argument, the court had jurisdiction to entertain the suit because it was commenced in accordance with the provisions of the law.
He averred that the subject matter of the suit was not a pre-election issue, as argued by INEC since the reliefs sought by the applicants dealt with the preparation of the elections and not the conduct of the elections.
According to him, the applicants were merely trying to compel the electoral body to comply with the Constitution, its regulations and guidelines following its failure to do so during the Presidential and National Assembly elections held on February 25, 2023.
The court granted the applicants an order of mandamus directing and compelling the defendant and all its agents to comply with and enforce the provision of clause 37 of the Regulations and Guidelines for the Conduct Of Elections, 2022 for the conduct of the Governorship and House of Assembly elections in Lagos State on 11 March 2023 to wit:
Also granted is an order of mandamus “directing and compelling the defendant and all its agents and their privies or any persons acting under their directions to comply with and enforce the provision of clause 38 of the REGULATIONS AND GUIDELINES FOR THE CONDUCT OF ELECTIONS, 2022 for the conduct of the Governorship and House of Assembly elections in Lagos State on 11 March 2023 to wit:
“Mandating the Presiding Officer of all polling units to transmit or transfer the result of the Polling Units electronically, direct to the collation system and use the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) to upload a scanned copy of the EC8A to INEC Result Viewing Portal (IReV) immediately after the completion of all the Polling Units voting and results procedures.”
Justice Lifu further granted an order directing and compelling the Defendant to enforce the observance and compliance of Section 27(1) of the Electoral Act 2022 in the distribution of electoral materials during the conduct of the Governorship and House of Assembly election in Lagos State on 11 March 2023 “by engaging the services of independent, competent, and reliable logistic companies who are non-partisans or known supporters of any political for the distribution of electoral materials and personnel.”