By: Joy Odor/Kaduna
The Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) has declared Nigerian voters as the winners of the 2019 elections as they took ownership of the voting process and determined to make their votes count.
The Team Leaders of the CDD Election Analysis Centre stated this while briefing journalists on the Final Election-Day Report of the 2019 Presidential and National Assembly Elections on Monday at the Sheraton Hotel, Abuja.
They commended Nigerians for trooping out in large numbers to cast their vote, in spite of the numerous challenges many of them faced during the rescheduled presidential and national assembly elections on Saturday, February 23, 2019. For us,
They noted with concern the late response of INEC to election-related incidents and challenges referred to it from polling units on Election Day.
According to them, also, of concern is, INEC’s poor communication with stakeholders such as the postponement of voting in places such as Bonny in Rivers state should have been communicated properly and in a timely manner to the electorate and to explain the logistical challenges that have led to it.
The Leaders also lamented that the elections provided further illustration of the anti-democratic political culture of the country’s mainstream political class, through their engagement in various forms of political brigandage and their do-or-die attitude to elections.
They were of the opinion that if the ordinary citizens are the winners of these elections, the underlying zero-sum attitude and approach of the country’s mainstream political class leaves a great deal to be desired.
They however concluded that the voting related processes and management went generally well despite hitches here and there and commended the determination of Nigerians to exercise their franchise despite the odds militating against their ability to do so.
The leaders of CDD hoped that the identified problems on election day will be addressed adequately and urgently while urging all Nigerians to be calm, not to provoke and to be provoked, as they await the final declaration of results of the election by INEC.
It would be recalled that the Centre for Democracy and Development had deployed over 3,500 field observers, spread across the country, for the 2019 Presidential and National Assembly Elections.
The Centre also established a fake news tracking and analysis centre, and an Election Analysis Centre (EAC), comprising of leading experts on elections and democracy.