Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Professor Attahiru Jega, and six national commissioners will retire today.
They will all be retiring due to the conclusion of their five-year tenure.
The retiring commissioners are Col. M.K. Hammanga (rtd) (Adamawa State-North-East); Dr Ishmael Jikiri Igbani (Rivers State, South-South), Prof. Lai Olurode, (Osun State (South West), Gladys Nne Nwafor (Abia State, South-East); Mrs Thelma Amata Iremiren, Delta State (South-South) and Engr. Dr. Nuru Yakubu (Yobe State, North-East).
INEC’s REC in Lagos, Akin Orebiyi said during the opening session of a two-day stakeholders review meeting on the role of media in the 2015 elections organised by the UNDP – Democratic Governance for Development, DGD, Project II.
Orebiyi, who said the commission could not fulfil some of its promises to the electorate, expressed hope of a better electoral process ahead of the 2019 elections.
According to him, production and distribution of permanent voters’ cards, PVCs, could not be delivered to Nigerians as planned by the commission.
“We promised to do a number of things but we couldn’t deliver all, for instance, Only 60 per cent of PVCs were distributed in the whole of Ogun State, while 5.6 million eligible voters were able to redeem their PVCs in Lagos, out of about 5.8 million who registered, this means that around 200,000 eligible voters were disenfranchised,” he said.
Meanwhile, as the INEC chairman, Professor Jega officially ends his tenure, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has hailed the enviable record set by the electoral boss.
According to Atiku, the successful conduct of the 2015 elections with the introduction of Card Reader and Permanent Voter Cards, PVCs, had tremendously boosted Jega’s reputation and earned him the respect of Nigerians and the international community.
A statement signed by Mazi Paul Ibe and released by the Atiku media office in Abuja yesterday quoted the former vice president and chieftain of APC as stressing that Jega had disarmed even the worst pessimists that never gave him the slightest chance to conducte free and fair elections in Nigeria.
Atiku said Jega had made a huge difference in the conduct of credible elections, and that he left no one in doubt that he deserved the appointment in the first place.
He explained that he was impressed by Jega’s remarkable comportment, patience, calmness and presence of mind under very tense situations.
The former vice president noted that Jega had set a standard that would require his successor to work twice as hard to maintain his record and build on it.

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