Fred Itua, Abuja
Senate President, Ahmad Lawan and Minority Leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe, yesterday, traded tackles over the authenticity of votes from the North East during the conduct of the 2019 presidential election.
The duo clashed when the Senate confirmed Professor Mahmood Yakubu as chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for a second term.
Abaribe, had while making a case for a strong electoral system, questioned how INEC conducted elections in the North East in 2019 with huge turnout of voters and electoral victory for the All Progressives Congress (APC) despite the ongoing insurgency war.
He said: “We’re happy that innovations have been brought and INEC has conducted some elections we can say were fair. We want to see more in the coming months. But I’m worried. I’m worried and want to know how INEC conducted elections in Boko Haram infested North East, particularly Borno and came up with the number we saw whereas, there was an insurgency war there.”
Abaribe was interjected by Lawan, who cautioned Abaribe. He said results from the North East were not allocated as being rumoured in many quarters. He said it was unfair to conclude that the people didn’t vote.
Meanwhile, the Senate has confirmed Professor Yakubu. Despite initial setbacks and plans to detail the confirmation, senators who took their turns to speak, said Yakubu has done well and should therefore be confirmed.
The senators drawn from the two political parties, however, called for more concerted efforts from INEC boss to ensure 2023 general elections do not have challenges.