Response to a 247ureports.com report titled: “INEC Commissioner Amina Zakari Sighted at Tony Nwoye’s Hotel in Awka”
Your story with the title above refers.
As the news item rightly pointed out, our National Commissioner, Mrs Amina Zakari is in charge of Electoral Operations, which is a critical part of INEC’s overall activities. Thus, she has the responsibility to oversee a whole range of processes and her presence is understandably required from time to time at each specific place where an election is about to take place.
A couple of weeks ago, she was in Sokoto for the by-election to fill a vacant federal constituency slot in the National Assembly. She has also been deeply involved in all other major and not-so-major elections, such as the governorship elections in Kogi, Bayelsa, Edo and Ondo states that were conducted between November 2015 and now.
With respect to the Anambra governorship election scheduled for November 18, 2017, recall that the Commission unveiled the timetable and schedule of activities as far back as February this year. About 14 activities were lined up and as we approach the D-Day, the level of activities scales up. And part of her responsibilities, Mrs Zakari has to be in the main theatre of all planned electoral programmes. She was in Awka last week as part of her supervisory duties and nobody can claim to have seen her with any politician at any time. There was simply no time for such frivolities.
Interestingly, the decision to choose any venue for the Commission’s electoral programmes is informed, strictly, by logistical requirements, which ironically is not even hers to take. She only reports at the venue to perform her official duties.
Therefore, it is misleading to insinuate that Mrs Zakari was at a specific hotel in Awka to meet or mingle with politicians. Her presence in Awka was strictly
to perform her official duties as part of the overall preparations for the Anambra governorship election that everybody is aware of.
Let me add, with a deep sense of responsibility, that INEC has so far demonstrated its ability to conduct transparent, free and fair elections attested to by all. The Commission will continue to provide a level playing field for all candidates and political parties, without fear or favour.
Rotimi Lawrence Oyekanmi
Chief Press Secretary to Hon. Chairman, INEC
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