The Lagos division of the Federal High Court has ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to electronically upload the results of the governorship elections in the state, from the polling units to the Results Viewing Portal (IReV).

Nairametrics gathered that the Labour Party had approached the court alongside its gubernatorial candidate in Lagos, Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour and 40 others, seeking an order compelling INEC to obey the Electoral Act and its guidelines for the conduct of the elections.

They had filed the suit following INEC’s failure to upload results electronically during the February 25 presidential and National Assembly elections.

Applicants prayer: in an ex-parte motion, the applicants had approached the court to compel INEC to comply with Clauses 37 and 38 of the Regulations and Guidelines for the Conduct of Elections 2022 on electronic transmission of results and Section 27 of the Electoral Act on the distribution of election materials.

After approaching the court, the court granted them leave to apply for Judicial Review and Mandamus Orders compelling the electoral body to directly and electronically upload results from the polling units to the INEC Results Viewing Portal IReV.

In their application, they submitted that “after seeing the pattern of 25th and 26 of February” and through the period of collation of the presidential results in Abuja, the handwriting on the wall became clear that the defendant, INEC had colluded with the APC in Lagos State to steal the mandate of the good people of Lagos State and to deprive the applicants their rightful victory at their various wards.

They contended that if the court does not grant the leave, the same vote manipulations would occur on the 11th of March 2023, during the governorship and House of Assemblies election in Lagos State.”

Court’s judgement: delivering judgement on the suit on Wednesday, Justice Peter Lifu ordered INEC to directly and electronically upload from the polling units to the IReV.

According to the judge, entertaining the suit was within the jurisdiction of the court as it was instituted in line with relevant provisions of law

The judge said the applicants were only seeking to compel INEC to comply with the Constitution, its regulations, and guidelines as they had failed to do so at the presidential election. The Judge said:

  • “An order of mandamus directing and compelling the defendant and all its agents and their privies or any persons acting under their directions to comply with and enforce the provision of Clause 37 of the Regulations and Guidelines for the Conduct of Elections, 2022 for the conduct of the governorship and House of Assembly elections in Lagos State on 11 March 2023, to wit: Mandating the Presiding Officer of all Polling Units to paste the Publication of Result Poster EC60(E) at the Polling Units conspicuously after completing the EC8A result sheet.”

The distribution of election materials, the court had previously restrained INEC from engaging the services of individuals or companies who are members of any political party in the distribution of electoral materials.