The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said it will transmit the results of the 2019 general elections electronically through the Nigerian Communications Satellites Limited (NIGCOMSAT’s) satellite.
To this end, INEC had sought NIGCOMSAT’s help to use its Sat1-R satellite to electronically transmit 2019 election results immediately after counting at each polling unit across the country.
The Chairman of the electoral commission, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, disclosed this during a working visit to NIGCOMSAT headquarters in Abuja Wednesday.
The INEC delegation, which was received by the Managing Director Ms Abimbola Alale and other management staff of the agency, toured the agency’s facilities for about 15 minutes.
Prof Yakubu who said he was impressed with he saw in the country’s satellite communication agency, stated that INEC was committed to deepening the deployment of technology in elections.
He added that through NIGCOMSAT’s satellite and connectivity provided by telecom operators, the results of elections of each of the 119, 973 polling units nationwide would be electronically transmitted on the spot and real time, including the scanned images of result sheets.
Aside from this, the INEC chairman also said the commission wants NIGCOMSAT to help in voter education through electronics message display as the 2019 elections draw near.
“It is for this reason that we wish to leverage on the capacity of NIGCOMSAT to provide a wide range of telecommunication services. In particular, your broadband service offers a tremendous flexible bandwidth capacity that can be deployed almost anywhere and in a short period of time, including hard-to-reach and temporary locations. These are invaluable to the work of INEC. Working with you and in partnership with the NCC as well as the telecommunications operators, we believe the challenges to the seamless transmission of results are not insurmountable”, he said.
The INEC chairman said the commission is deepening its application of technology to elections hence the partnership with NIGCOMSAT.
But he assured that INEC “would continue to make available the hard copies of results sheets to political party agents at each polling unit and collation centres against which the integrity of the electronically-transmitted results can be compared, verified and authenticated. Further, and in keeping with our current practice, a copy of the result for each election shall be pasted at the polling units immediately after the counting of ballots for public knowledge and accountability.”
In her remarks, the Ms Alale said NIGCOMSAT was ready to partner with INEC in transmitting election result to every nook and cranny of Nigeria.
NIGCOMSAT’s Sat1-R, she said, is capable of covering and transmitting live and real time all that transpire during the election.