INEC to present certificate of return to Soludo, reviews BVAS

INEC drops Soludo, Ozigbo, others

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), says it will on Friday present the Certificate of Return to the winner of the just concluded Anambra governorship election, Charles Soludo.

It also said it will address all identified challenges during the election, including the malfunctioning of the Bimodal Voters Accreditation System (BVAS), ahead of the FCT election next year.

The commission disclosed this in a statement on Thursday by its spokesperson, Festus Okoye, after a meeting in Abuja.

After the Tuesday supplementary election in Ihiala Local Government Area of the state, the commission on Wednesday, declared Mr Soludo of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) winner of the election which began on 6 November.

Mr Soludo polled a total of 112,229 votes to defeat Valentine Ozigbo of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Andy Uba of the All Progressives Congress (APC) who scored 53,807 and 43,285 votes, respectively.

At the end of its meeting in Abuja on Thursday, INEC said the certificate of return presentation to Mr Soludo and his deputy, Ibezim Gilbert, will be held at its state office in Awka.

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The commission said unlike on Saturday when the glitches of BVAS were rampant thus delaying the exercise in several polling units, the machine performed “optimally” during the supplementary poll.

“However, after the supplementary election in Ihiala Local Government Area on Tuesday 9th November 2021 and before the process was concluded, the Commission commenced a preliminary review of the functionality of systems, particularly the newly introduced Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS).

“The system performed two functions on election day. First is the accreditation of voters using both the fingerprint and facial authentication. Secondly, it snaps the polling unit level result sheets and uploads them in real-time to the INEC Result Viewing (IReV) portal. This aspect of the BVAS functionality performed optimally such that by the early hours of Sunday morning, results from 4,987 (88.5%) out of 5,634 polling units had been uploaded for public view.

“While still in the field, our ICT team responded to the identified glitches in the accreditation of voters and corrected them. Consequently, in the Ihiala supplementary election, there were no reported incidents of BVAS malfunction,” the statement said.

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INEC assured that it will examine the system ahead of the FCT election holding in February.

“We will carry out an in-depth examination of the system, review reports from accredited observers and the media and respond to all identified challenges ahead of the next major Area Council election in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), held on 12th February 2022,” it said.

Despite the controversies generated by the BVAS during the just concluded off-cycle election, the commission reiterated its commitment to technology-driven election processes.

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