The Senate on Thursday voted along party lines over section 52(3) of the Electoral Act Amendment Bill, approving electronic transmission of electoral results based on certain conditions.
28 Senators mostly from the PDP voted for the original amendment in the report while 52 Senators mostly from the APC voted for the amendment as proposed by Senator Sabi Abdullahi.
Going by this vote, INEC is conditioned to transmit election results electronically only if the national network coverage is adjudged to be adequate and secure by NCC and approved by the National Assembly.
The Committee had, in the report, recommended in Section 52(3) that, INEC “may transmit results of elections by electronic means where and when practicable.
The APC Senators 52 of them including the chairman of the Senate INEC committee, Kabiru Gaya, voted against the panel’s report, which gives the electoral umpire the sole power to determine the practicability of electronic transmission of results.
The Senate President, Ahmed Lawan hit the gavel after a voice vote.
The APC caucus justified their votes on the claim of the NCC that only 43 per cent of the country has network coverage whereas the PFP senators raise the concern that allowing the NCC and the National Assembly to meddle in the affairs of INEC will rubbish the integrity of the polls.