The Presidency has reacted to the EU report on Nigeria 2019 election, promising to analyse it fully & act on the recommendations.
This was contained in statement released by the Presidency and made available to the Media on Saturday.
The statement gave details of the EU report and why the Presidency believed the report was a true reflection of the state of the 2019 presidential election, noting that the report has proved that the election of President Muhammadu Buhari represented the will of Nigerians.
The Presidency noted:
“This is further proof that the polls reflected the overall will of Nigerians, and that the world is solidly behind the election of President Muhammadu Buhari for a second term. “
The statement further said that by inviting the EU observers to the country to monitor the elections in the first instance, it showed that the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari meant well for the country and demonstrated the commitment of the administration to pure democratic process.
The statement read:
“This was a clear indication of the administration’s good intentions, commitment to a pure democratic process, and desire to improve for the next elections. The EU noted in their report that there were marked improvements from previous elections, although stating that more work needed to be done. “
The Presidency said that it would work with relevant stakeholders to ensure that the recommendations in the reports were implemented and areas of concerns noted by the EU were addressed.
Despite the hitches of the elections and well noted challenges and violence that characterised the elections in certain parts of Nigeria, the Presidency believed that INEC conducted a good election and that the areas of concerns notwithstanding, the overall outcome of the election was not affected.
The statement continued:
“The Presidency assures that the Commission is in safe hands and happy that they are currently engaged in root and branch reviews of the 2019 general elections and will input lessons learned into its recommendations for electoral and constitutional reforms.
“We believe that INEC conducted a good election and will continue to improve on its processes and procedures.
“While it is regretted that the elections in a few parts of the country witnessed some violence, among other shortcomings highlighted by the EU, we note however that none of these hitches affected the overall outcome of the elections.
“Thankfully, EU did not question the results of the presidential election. For instance, on page 3 in its Executive Summary, the EU said: ‘positively, the elections were competitive, parties were overall able to campaign and civil society enhanced accountability.’ “
The Presidency also gave additional reasons why the EU report on Nigeria Election was acceptable and welcome:
“The report also acknowledged that INEC made a number of improvements, including making electoral participation more accessible through simplified voting procedures.
“On page 4, the EU noted that the elections were competitive with a large number of candidates for all seats although competition was primarily between the All Progressives Congress and the Peoples Democratic Party.
“According to the report “parties and candidates were overall able to campaign, with freedoms of assembly, expression and movement broadly respected.”
“On Page 5, the report noted that the EU EOM media monitoring over 46 days showed federal government-owned Radio’s commitment to balanced election coverage.
“It said that positively in almost all observations party agents received copies of the results forms, adding that the National Collation Centre for the presidential election was open to party agents and observers, and was continuously televised.
“Again on page 37, the report said the national collation Centre for the presidential results was open to party agents, observers and the media with each state’s results projected on a large screen.”
The statement also quoted copiously from the reports to show that it was in alignment with the findings”
In all, the Presidency believes the the report does not discredit the 2019 presidential election as won by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) under President Muhammadu Buhari.