Buhari delivered free, credible elections – Lai Mohammed

THE Minister  of Information and Culture Lai Mohammed said Nigeria’s president Muhammadu Buhari delivered on his promise of free and fair elections in the 2023 polls.

In a statement he issued on Sunday, April 30, Mohammed described the exercise as the best election in Nigeria’s history, adding that members of the opposition contesting the process were “shameless sore losers.”

“The President would rather lose his state and many of his party’s strongholds than tamper with the fidelity of the election, and that is why he provided a level-playing field for all parties.

“Going by the results, none of the opposition parties met any of the conditions stipulated for winning the presidential election. They did not even come close, in spite of their pre-election grandstanding. They keep leaning on some international observers to justify their fraudulent claim that the election was rigged,” he noted.

Buhari had posited last week that overconfidence, complacency and bad tactical moves cost members of the opposition parties the election.

Reiterating this point, Mohammed said the challenges experienced with the INEC Result Viewing (IReV) portal were inconsequential to the outcome of the elections.

“The opposition’s insinuation that the failure to immediately upload the result of the presidential election onto IReV affected the credibility of the election is a fraud. It is an act of blackmail and deceit by desperate individuals.

“The opposition Labour Party, in particular, will go down in the history books as the first-ever distant third-place finisher in a presidential election anywhere to have bold-facedly claimed victory,” he noted.

Ahead of the 2023 presidential and national assembly elections, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) assured Nigerians that results would be transmitted electronically from polling units to the IReV portal, a new method aimed at addressing results manipulation.






     

     

    Buhari also promised to leave a legacy of free and fair elections during the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly in 2022.

    Several Nigerians had bought into the promise of credible elections, and over nine million new eligible voters registered to vote ahead of the elections.

    INEC, however, reneged on its promise to upload results in real-time, claiming that technical glitches had been responsible for the situation.

    This attracted criticisms from some Nigerians, especially  members of the two main opposition parties, People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and Labour Party (LP), who are currently contesting the emergence of Nigeria’s president-elect Bola Ahmed Tinubu as winner of the fiercely contested elections.

    Ijeoma Opara is a journalist with The ICIR. Reach her via [email protected] or @ije_le on Twitter.

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