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U.S. backed monitor, YIAGA explains how parallel voter tabulation will work

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Some INEC officials sorting out materials for distribution to Area Councils ahead of rescheduled 2019 presidential and National Assembly elections in Abuja on Thursday (21/2/19).<br />01556/21/2/19/Albert Otu/Precious Imonigie/BJO/NAN

The Youth Initiative for Advocacy, Growth and Advancement (YIAGA) Africa yesterday explained how it would verify the general elections results through the Parallel Voter Tabulation (PVT).

It expects to receive over 33,000 observer reports containing 500,000 unique pieces of information on the process and results of the election.

The group said over 94 data clerks as well as a team of data analysts will work throughout Saturday and Sunday to process, analyse and verify the reports at the Watching the Vote (WTV) National Data Center located on Floor 02, Transcorp Hilton in Abuja.

YIAGA Africa has as its technical partners the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and the US-based National Democratic Institute.

At a briefing by WTV Working Group Chair, Dr. Hussaini Abdu and YIAGA Africa Executive Director, Samson Itodo, the group said the PVT, described as the gold standard observation methodology, has been utilised throughout the world and in previous state elections in Nigeria.

“Based on reports from its observers in the sampled polling units, YIAGA Africa will also provide an independent projection of voter turnout and will be able to project the vote shares that each party should receive within a narrow range.

“If the official results fall within YIAGA Africa’s estimated ranges, then the public, political parties and candidates should have confidence in the ballots cast at the polling units. As soon as INEC announces the official results, YIAGA Africa will follow up with a final press conference to share its own statement on the accuracy of the election results and will publicise these projections,” the group said.

“YIAGA Africa undertook the WTV project to provide Nigerian voters, presidential candidates, political parties, civil society and INEC with independent information about whether the official results for the 23 February 2019 presidential election truly reflect the ballots cast at polling units.

“The WTV project is driven by data – for all Nigerians – Beholden to None! Only INEC, however, has the legal mandate to announce the election results.

“As soon as INEC announces the official results, YIAGA Africa will follow up with a final press conference to share its own statement on the accuracy of the election results and will publicise these projections,” the group said.

YIAGA Africa said following the postponement, it deployed observers in the 774 Local Government Areas to monitor the implementation of INEC’s reviewed election logistical plan.

It found that INEC is retrieving materials from the LGAs to the Central Bank and has been reconfiguring smart card readers.


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