The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has promised to announce the presidential elections early.

The promise was made by the electoral body’s chairman, Mahmood Yakubu on Wednesday, February 20, 2019, while speaking to newsmen in Abuja.

According to Vanguard, Yakubu said “Even though this time around we have more presidential candidates than in 2015, we have more registered voters than we had in 2015, the size of the result sheet is bigger than we had in 2015, but we are committed to concluding the process for the Presidential elections roughly about the same time that we concluded the 2015 general elections. We will do whatever we can to ensure that we speedily conclude the process but we won’t sacrifice accuracy for speed.”

INEC staff (File photo)

How prepared is INEC?

On the level of INEC’s preparedness to conduct the elections scheduled to hold on Saturday, February 23, 2019, he said “At yesterday’s briefing, we reported that we achieved 95% configuration of the Smart Card Readers SCR nationwide. The Card Readers were introduced in the 2015 general elections to facilitate the accreditation of voters using the PVCs. They are configured to specific polling units and only open for use at 8am on Election Day. They automatically shut down by 10 pm in order to forestall any illegal use before the appointed time of elections. I am pleased to report that we have now achieved 100% completion of the configuration. We are good to go on this score.

 “Similarly, I briefed you yesterday that our State offices had commenced the process of inviting stakeholders to the Central Bank of Nigeria to examine the retrieved materials deployed last week and to witness the batching of materials according to Local Government Areas (LGAs). Reports from the States indicate full compliance.

 “I briefed you yesterday that having moved the sensitive materials to the 36 States and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), the forward deployment to the 774 LGAs nationwide will commence today Wednesday 20thFebruary 2019 and be concluded tomorrow Thursday 21st February 2019.

INEC staff setting up a polling booth

ALSO READ:Buhari not planning to remove Yakubu as INEC chairman

"Already, Adamawa, Anambra, Benue, Ekiti, Jigawa, Katsina, Osun, Ogun, Oyo and Taraba States have commenced the movement of materials to LGAs today. Other States will do so and conclude tomorrow. We will give a full rendition of movement to LGAs across all States of the Federation tomorrow.

“We have been making good progress on logistics. Similarly, all other arrangements for the movement of personnel from the LGAs to the Wards are on course. We will fully brief you tomorrow at 3pm.”

INEC postponed the presidential election which was supposed to hold on Saturday, February 16, 2019, due to logistic challenges.