The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said it has no intention of removing the Lagos State Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Segun Agbaje.
Some Nigerians have called for Agbaje’s removal from office over the arrangement between the electoral body and the Lagos transport committee led by Musiliu Akinsanya aka MC Oluomo.
Agbaje, in a recent meeting, said the electoral commission has contracted the parks management committee in Lagos to help with the movement of election materials in the state.
His statement, however, generated reactions from the camps of the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar and Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi.
Rotimi Oyekanmi, media aide to the INEC Chairman, Mahmood Yakubu, speaking with reporters on Wednesday in Abuja, said Agbaje will not be removed from Lagos over unfounded allegations.
He stated that the Lagos REC is a conscientious, honest, dependable, and hardworking man, adding that his integrity speaks for him in all the places where he has served.
According to him, Agbaje will not only conduct the Presidential and National Assembly elections but will supervise the Governorship and State House of Assembly elections.
He said: “Let me make one thing clear upfront. Mr Agbaje will not be removed as the REC for Lagos over unfounded allegations.
“He will not only conduct the presidential and national assembly elections scheduled for February 25, he will also supervise the governorship and state house of assembly elections to be held on 11th March.
“He is a conscientious, honest, dependable, and hardworking REC. His integrity speaks for him in all the places where he has served.
“Let me break this down for you. During the recent Continuous Voter Registration that took place between June 2021 and July 2022, Lagos state under Agbaje registered the highest number of voters in the country – 585,629.
“On January 27 this year, we announced that out of the 940,200 PVCs delivered to Lagos state as of that date, 839,720 PVCs representing 89.3 percent had been collected.
“This debunks the allegation that the Lagos REC deliberately withheld the PVCs belonging to persons from a particular region of the country.
“The unions don’t have vehicles, and even if they have some, they cannot possibly provide the number of vehicles that the commission requires to conduct the general election. Rather, the unions are made up of individuals that own vehicles.
“You then have to negotiate with the vehicle owners and join the unions as witnesses and for accountability purposes.”