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Partisan lecturers won’t be returning, collation officers – INEC

In the upcoming elections, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) will not accept as Returning and State Collation Officers the nominations of university lecturers who are card-carrying members, have participated in partisan politics, or have been convicted of electoral malpractice.

During a meeting with vice Chancellors of Nigerian universities in Abuja, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, Chairman of INEC, made this clear.

According to Yakubu, the collation of results for the 2023 general elections would take place in 8,809 Registration Areas or Wards, 774 Local Government Areas, 36 States, and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), each of which required returning officers for each constituency.

We will employ 23,258 individuals as Collation and Returning Officers collectively. Because of this, this meeting is very important.
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According to my letter to the vice chancellors, “as in previous elections, we have requested each University for a specified number and category of academic staff.”

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Staff members who carry cards or have participated in partisan politics should not be nominated, I must caution.

“Similarly, individuals who are known to have obvious political leanings despite not being involved in partisan politics should not be nominated.

“In addition, those who have been found guilty of electoral fraud must be excluded.”

In his letter to the Vice Chancellors, Yakubu stated that INEC would carefully examine the list, which must be submitted confidentially in accordance with the commission’s instructions.

“Each collation and returning officer will swear to an oath of neutrality, like all election duty personnel.”

Yakubu praised the collaboration between Nigerian universities and the election administration in Nigeria.

He stated that it would be extremely challenging for INEC to conduct credible elections without the involvement of tertiary institutions, particularly universities.

He stated that while INEC employs academic staff members as election collation and reporting officers, it uses members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) as ad hoc staff for elections.

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“The Commission selects the required Collation and Returning Officers from the academic staff of our universities for the various collation and declaration centers. This includes Vice Chancellors who act as Returning Officers for Governorship elections and State Collation Officers for Presidential elections.

“Despite a few difficulties, this happy partnership has further enhanced the transparency, credibility, and public confidence in the Nigerian elections.

He stated, “The commission wishes to maintain this partnership.”

In the past, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC), was accompanied by Chris Maiyaki, Deputy Executive Secretary of the NUC, who thanked INEC for its confidence in the Nigerian university system.

We appreciate INEC’s consistent recognition of this constituency. Why haven’t they joined the actual civil service? Why don’t we join the union? To the bankers, why not?

“I believe this demonstrates the significance of the nation’s trust in the university system.

Rasheed stated, “We hope this meeting will turn out to be a productive and fruitful one.” At the end of the day, “as the international community and the nation expect, this elections will also come to pass, and we will have course to glorify God that Nigeria rose to the occasion,” and “we will have to course to glorify God that Nigeria rose to the occasion.”

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Also, Prof. Lilian Salami, Chairman of the Committee of Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities, promised that the faculty would do their best in the national assignment.

According to Salami, who is also Vice-Chancellor of the University of Benin, the academic staff must perform their duties effectively if Nigeria is to be celebrated by other nations.

That is due to the fact that we are not only preparing the workforce for this nation, but we are also forming characters, and naturally, we have good characters.

“We anticipate that in any role that we are given, I can almost vouch that we will deliver to this nation because we have come out stronger.

Salami stated, “We will be proud to have contributed our quota to the development of this country at the end of this exercise.” (NAN)

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