Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, on Wednesday assured that nothing would stop the electoral umpire from conducting Nigeria’s elections on 23 February.
Addressing the diplomatic community and international election monitoring groups in the country for the 2019 elections, Yakubu, who was represented by an INEC National Commissioner, Dr Mustapha Lecky, said “only an Act of God” can stop the conduct of the rescheduled Presidential and National Assembly polls.
He also said that the commission had put in place everything possible to ensure the elections held on Saturday.
“We believe that as a prayerful nation the act of God has been assuaged and that things will go right, we have no reason to feel that anything will go wrong,” he said.
“We have received all the materials, they have been checked, audited, people have been informed, party agents have gone there to check.”
Rozyradio had reported that the INEC boss shocked many Nigerians on 16 February by announcing at about 2:40 a.m., a few hours to the commencement of the polls, that the elections had been postponed over logistic problems.
In a related development, Atiku Abubakar, President Muhammadu Buhari’s main challenger in the race for Nigeria’s highest office, has alleged that the president plans to ‘use’ INEC to shift elections in Borno, Adamawa and Kaduna states.
The former vice president, who is running on the platform of the immediate past ruling party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), said in a statement that the plot was hatched at a closed-door meeting between Buhari and the three state governors in Abuja on Tuesday.
But in his reaction, INEC director of publicity and voter education, Oluwole Osaze-Uzzi, said the electoral umpire was not aware of such plan.