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INEC works with telecommunications companies to solve network problems.

The Independent National Electoral Commission has said it is working with the major network service providers, such as MTN, Glo, Airtel and 9Mobile, to address any hitch that may arise during the polls.

The INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, stated this on Friday at the INEC media briefing in Abuja.

Yakubu said the commission has also taken sufficient steps to fortify and protect its systems and processes against malicious attacks.

He added that INEC has vast experience in election results transmission via the iREV while the BVAS requires online process only at the point of polling unit uploading.

“We have taken sufficient steps to fortify and protect our systems and processes. I must also say we are leaving certain things when it comes to cyber security to ourselves because the walls have ears but Nigerians should rest assured that we are aware that our resources may be susceptible to attacks but we have taken measures.

“We have tremendous experience in transmitting results real time in Nigeria. We successfully transmitted results for 105 constituencies nationwide. Please be rest assured that we are aware of the challenges and we have the capacity within the commission to be able to respond to the challenges.

After all, the BVAS is not an electronic voting machine; it will not operate online on election day. It is completely offline. Where we need a little bit of internet connectivity is when we transmit results from the Polling Unit and we are on top of the game, he said.

On the issue of the omission of the Labour Party logo on House of Representatives ballot papers in Lagos, the INEC chairman said, “The commission has a record of obedience to court orders.

“So, we have already tasked our legal office to look at all the judgments we have been receiving and they have been coming virtually every day.

The party you are talking about in one day alone served on INEC 70 processes on the nomination of candidates and in Lagos, on Federal Constituencies alone, we accepted the nomination of candidates for 13 out of 24 Federal Constituencies from that party by court order. So, we will look at the court order and respond accordingly.”

Also speaking, the Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba said 425,106 security operatives will be deployed for the elections to ensure a secured electoral process.

The IGP, who said the figure is exclusive of members of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, stated that the personnel were drawn from the Nigeria Police, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps.

Others are from the Federal Road Safety Commission, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, Nigerian Correctional Service, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and the Nigeria Immigration Service.

He said, “In the Police, we have 310,973, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence – 51,000; Federal Road Safety Corps – 21,000; Nigerian Correctional Service – 11,336; National Drug Law Enforcement Agency – 9,447; Economic and Financial Crimes Commission – 350; Nigeria Immigration Service – 21,000.”

Baba also said orderlies attached to Very Important Personalities will be withdrawn during the polls and even if they escorted them to the voting centres, they should stay at a distance for the VIP to cast their votes before escorting them back.

“Just like in any other election, we expect our VIPs to drop their bodyguards/orderlies that are armed in escorting them to the polling stations. Even if they escort them, they should stop or stay at a distance so that the person can cast his votes and leave with his aides.

“We do not expect our men in the polling units. We have told our officers to comply. Those of them with the VIPs have also been communicated through our medium of communication,” he stated.

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