Observer Groups Tell INEC To Review Kano Guber Poll, Withdraw Governor-elect’s Certificate

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A coalition of observer groups accredited by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has requested that the March 18, 2023, Governorship Election in Kano State, North-West Nigeria, in which the electoral umpire declared Abba Kabir Yusuf of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) the winner, be reviewed.

The coalition’s leader, Mr. Friday Maduka, presented its position during a news conference at the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Press Centre, Kano on Thursday.

As an observer of the election, according to Maduka, the coalition allegedly observed too many anomalies and violations of the electoral laws and INEC instructions for the election.

He listed the alleged electoral malpractices to include ballot box snatching, ballot paper destruction, voter intimidation, suppression, violence, and vote buying.

“As a matter of national urgency, INEC should review the election results, retract its position, and consider holding a supplementary election,” Mr Maduka said.

He stated that the supplemental election should be held in the impacted areas, which had over 270,000 cancelled votes, in accordance with the applicable electoral rules, and that the electoral umpire should evaluate the process “for the peace and progress of the state in particular and Nigeria in general.”

According to the coalition, INEC violated its own rules by announcing Mr Yusuf the winner while the results were still being collated.

“In addition, the margin of victory, which is around 130,000 votes, is less than the total number of cancelled votes, which is over 270,000.” In instances like this, Section 65 of the Electoral Act is extremely explicit. As a result, the group claims that “the hasty declaration of a winner in the Kano state governorship election 2023 cannot be said to be fair to all political parties involved.”

It then denounced the state’s post-election violence, which occurred “after INEC’s hasty declaration of a winner, under the guise of victory celebration, resulting in loss of lives and property.”

“We urge the state’s various security agencies to thoroughly investigate the incident and apprehend the perpetrators so that they face the full force of the law,” the coalition concluded.

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