By Olumide Bajulaiye in Abuja
Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega, has said the results of the Presidential and National Assembly elections would be declared within 48 hours, that is Monday.
The INEC chairman also defended the award of the Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) to ACT Technologies Ltd.
He said the company passed all Due Processes at the Bureau for Public Enterprises (BPE) and got approval from the Federal Executive Council (FEC).
Jega said the commission is making all efforts to ensure that results are disclosed much earlier than in 2011.
He said the confidence the commission has on the 48-hour period for result was based on the improvements the commission has made since 2011.
Speaking during a joint press conference with the Director-General of the National Youth Service Commission (NYSC), Brig-Gen. Johnson Olawumi, on last- minute preparation for the polls. He, however, added that not all states will be able to get results within 24 hours.
The INEC boss also debunked allegations that a purported master key for the commission’s data base had been compromised, noting that the data base of INEC does not use master key but source code for encryption and decryption.
Jega who was replying an allegation by the Peoples Democratic Party Presidential Campaign Council that the master key was in possession of the APC, said only the producers of the data base infrastructure of INEC have the source code.
He said the company, Act Technologies Limited, was approved by Federal Executive Committee and was never blacklisted.
The INEC chairman said that the.Chairman of ACT Technologies Ltd wrote the commission that two of their staff were arrested, claiming that the arrest could affect production of the company, but certainly not the general elections.
Jega regretted that the allegation over the compromise of its data base was baseless and has the propensity to threaten the credibility of the election. He said the process of awarding the contract to company passed all required due process.
“It is regrettable that it is a pity that people can say all sorts of things and get away freely with it,” he said. He said “it is a last-minute attempt to undermine the credibility of the elections” .
He further stated that there is no disagreement with the Inspector General of Police, Suleman Abba, over whether to vote and go or vote and stay, noting that voters would have the choice of waiting or staying after casting their votes.
He, however, said the presence of voters during the counting of votes would enhance the credibility of the polls.
Jega cautioned corps members recruited by INEC for the election to take the assignment with all seriousness it deserves, noting that their security and welfare has been taken care of.
He hailed the role of Corps members in enhancing the electoral process. On his part, the DG of the NYSC, urged the corp members to handle the assignment with high integrity.
He urged them to stay away from any temptation that may tarnish the image of the scheme, families and nation.