Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has denied preventing ad-hoc employees from the south-east and south-south from participating in the Lagos state governorship election.
On Wednesday, a Twitter user claimed that INEC barred personnel from geopolitical zones from key electoral duties before to the March 18 election.
The tweet reads, “They did not give an explanation, but it was reported that the INEC leadership, which follows orders from the Tinubu political party, does not trust the Igbo/SS workers to carry out their instructions during the election.”
The INEC is meant to be a neutral government agency, but it has been so severely contaminated that it is unrecognisable.
In a statement signed by Tadese Adenike, head of voter education and publicity in Lagos, the commission expressed “great surprise” upon reading the claim on social media.
INEC stated that whereas 738 ad-hoc workers (collation officers) were employed for the national elections, the upcoming governorship and house of assembly elections will only require 427 collation officers because just two elections are involved.
“It is necessary to say categorically that all Igbo staff members have been reinstated as Collation Officers for the upcoming elections, while SPOs (Supervisory Presiding Officers) have kept their posts,” states the statement.
INEC stated that it was also alleged that Olusegun Agbaje, the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner in Lagos, colluded with some political actors to rig the gubernatorial election in the state.
The statement reads, “Anyone with information regarding the date and timing of the aforementioned telephone conversation should not hesitate to make it public.”
“Based on the aforesaid baseless charges, it is clear that the staged stories were invented to discredit INEC and tarnish the name of Mr. Olusegun Agbaje MFR, mni, the INEC resident commissioner for Lagos state.
“Without equivocation, Mr. Olusegun Agbaje MFR, mni is a man of integrity, sincerity, and total commitment to the service of the commission and the inhabitants of Nigeria, regardless of their ethnicity or political affiliation.
“In order to attain the intended outcome, the public should avoid fake news, misinformation, and disinformation and allow INEC in Lagos state to focus on the next election.”