Ex-Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, yesterday praised the Senate for reversing itself on electronic transmission of results, saying that it was victory for democracy. Ekweremadu, who spoke after the Senate reversed its earlier amendment to the Electoral Act Amendment Bill, said the action justified his assurances to Nigerians in July that all hope was not lost for the electronic transmission of the 2023 election results despite the initial setback. He said: “I want to specially commend the Senate for setting aside narrow partisan interests to correct the mistake of July 15, 2021 by reversing itself on the issue of electronic transmission of election results.
“This clause, though not originally part of the bill, was introduced by the Joint National Assembly Committee on the Independent National Electoral Commission, which I am part of, to save the nation the troubles of ballot box snatching, electoral violence, and manipulations that happen between the polling booths and collation centres.
“Although I was representing Nigeria at an international parliamentary session in Montenegro and therefore unavoidably absent during the passage of the bill in July, I had assured Nigerians that we would work with the progressives across party lines to dialogue with our colleagues and other critical stakeholders to ensure that electronic transmission of results was restored in the bill. “It is, therefore, heart-warming that my confidence in the capacity of my colleagues to dialogue and rise above narrow partisan interest on this matter was not misplaced.
“I must also commend the civil society organisations and Nigerians for standing up for what is right for the nation and our democracy.” Ekweremadu had in a statement by Uche Anichukwu, his media aide, on July 17, assured Nigerians that the “results of the 2023 elections will ultimately be electronically transmitted because it is the best way to go”.