Mike Igini, the resident electoral commissioner in Akwa Ibom State, has called for an end to criticism and complaints targeted at Mrs Amina Zakari following the postponement of Nigeria’s general elections on account of logistic challenges.
Mrs Zakari, one of the Independent National Electoral Commission’s National Commissioners, had been blamed for the logistic challenges that led the commission to shift the elections by a week with critics claiming that she oversees electoral operations and logistics.
However, Mr Igini, who was a guest on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics on Sunday, February 17, 2019, said she was being wrongly targeted and called on citizens to make more effort in verifying claims.
“I want to appeal to Nigerians that, this time, let us not just be name-calling without fact-checking some of the things people talk about. Amina Zakari is no longer the Chairperson of electoral operations,” he said.
According to the Akwa Ibom REC, contrary to the reports making the round in some circles, a different national commissioner is in charge of electoral operations and logistics.
“The person in charge of electoral operations today is Professor (Okechukwu) Ibeanu,” he said stressing that issues concerning arrangements for NYSC, and the welfare of ad hoc staff fell under him.
Zakari, who is the chairman of the INEC Committee on Collation Centre for the general elections, has been the subject of controversy before now with the opposition alleging that she is related to President Muhammadu Buhari and some calling for her resignation.
She and the commission have rejected the allegations and defended her professionalism.
In an interview with the BBC in January, she said she was not related to the President and argued that she had always done her job professionally and that she had never been found wanting in the discharge of her duties.