As anxiety grows among Nigerians on the outcome of Saturday’s presidential and National Assembly elections, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has only uploaded 11 per cent of results from polling units across the country on its portal.
Bellnewsonline.com also observed that the platform is riddled with unclear result sheets, which could undercut any meaningful use of a system that INEC said was designed to increase transparency in the nation’s elections.
Nearly a full day after polls closed and results were announced at polling centres across the country, the electoral umpire only had 20,031 uploaded on the INEC Results Viewing Portal as of 8:04 a.m. This represents only about 11.3 per cent of the 176,846 designated polling units nationwide.
The delay in uploading and accessing the portal raised concerns among Nigerians on Saturday, hours after votes were counted at various polling units, as many feared the results could be altered afterwards.
Checks by Bellnewsonline.com showed that some of the results sheets on the portal were either not neatly written or not properly uploaded, while some sheets were completely blank. An official told attributed the problems to the poor quality of BVAS machines supplied to INEC and distributed to polling agents nationwide.
In some states, however, some of the results uploaded in the portal are clear. Ekiti and Kano appear to be the states with better BVAS devices based on the high-quality sheets uploaded from their polling units.
For some Nigerians, it has also been challenging to view results on the 2022 Electoral Law-backed portal, which has raised the hope of many in the credibility of polls.
In a tweet, Yiaga Africa, a civil society organisation, also expressed concerns about the delay in results uploading at 7:00 p.m., four hours after the polls.
“Yiaga Africa is deeply concerned with the delay in uploading polling unit results for the presidential election on the INEC Election Result Portal. As at 7:00 p.m. on election day, no result was uploaded after voting & counting ended in several polling units,” the organisation wrote.
However, the spokesperson for INEC, Festus Okoye, did not immediately return the request seeking comments on the delay in results upload after several hours.
Bellnewsonline.com had also reported that the portal suffered an outage during and after the polls. INEC did not immediately say whether or not the collapse would be investigated for possible outside interference.