The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Wednesday said it is strategically ready for the 2019 general election.
The Chairman of the commission, Mahmood Yakubu stated this during the swearing-in of nine newly confirmed Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) in Abuja.
The nine RECs are Asman Sani Maikudi(Katsina State); Sam Olumekun(Ondo); Riskuwa Shehu(Sokoto); Kassim Giedam(Yobe); Jibrin Zerawa(Kano); Abdulganiyu Raji(Oyo); Sam Egwu(Kogi); Mike Igini (Delta) and Sadiq Musa.
It will be recalled that INEC had fixed the Presidential and National Assembly elections for Saturday, February 16, 2019 while Governorship, State Assembly and Area Council elections in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) will hold two weeks later on Saturday, March 2nd, 2019.
The INEC boss, while noting that Wednesday marked exactly 548 days to general elections, stressed that in terms of strategic planning, the Commission is prepared.
“The complimentary document, the Election Project Plan, is almost ready. Very soon, the Election Management System that will enable us track activities almost on daily basis will be ready”, he stated.
Yakubu however dismissed concerns over the preparedness of the commission to deliver credible election, assuring that votes will count.
He underscored the resolve of the Commission to uphold the sanctity of citizens’ choice which he described as the only basis for determining elective representation in Nigeria.
The chief electoral officer, noted that the Commission is scheduled to conduct four elections in quick succession in the the next few months.
The elections include: Dukku North State Constituency bye-election in Gombe State, bye-election in Eti Osa I State Constituency in Lagos State; Kware/Wamakko Federal Constituency in Sokoto State and the end of tenure Governorship election in Anambra State which has been scheduled to hold on November 18.
In March 2017, President Muhammadu Buhari forwarded the names of 27 nominees to the Senate for confirmation as RECs.
In June, the upper legislative chamber confirmed the appointment of 15 nominees; confirmed eight others, stepped down three nominees and rejected one in July.
OWEDE AGBAJILEKE, Abuja