Chidi Anselm Odinkalu, a Nigerian human rights activist and lawyer, has described Festus Okoye, the National Commissioner and Chairman of the Information and Voter Education Committee in the Independent National. Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), as ‘a useful fool.’
Odinkalu, 55, a former Chairman of Nigeria’s National Human Rights Commission, was reacting to the recent interview of Okoye by Channels Television.
Okoye said the results of the 2023 polls could not be fully uploaded because there were places where elections did not occur.
He also stated that there were polling units without registered voters, adding that political parties relying only on the results from the IREV at the election petition tribunal was not necessary.
”You cannot fully upload all the results because there were places where elections did not take place. There were polling units where there were no registered voters.
”There were areas where there were violent disruptions; you cannot expect INEC to upload all the results of all the PUs to the IReV.
”Each party has agents at all the polling units. I find it slightly difficult to understand why almost all the political parties are relying only on the results from the IREV,” he said.
Odinkalu, who was, until recently, the senior team manager for the Africa Program of the Open Society Justice Initiative, accused Okoye of distorting the facts.
He further stated that Okoye was a tool for crooked people to hoodwink Nigerians after the elections.
”Whenever crooked folks in Nigeria are looking for a useful fool, they look to the states of the southeast. Festus Okoye really sounds both crooked and foolish in this clip.
”When this tour of duty with INEC is over, he will look back on this as far from his finest hour.”
INEC continues to face heavy criticisms for the conduct of the 2023 elections, which European Union observers described as flawed.
Promises made by INEC before the elections were discarded on election day, to the dismay of many Nigerians, especially opposition parties.