- A claim has been sighted on social media alleging that the Nigerian electoral commission, INEC, is relocating ICT staffers from Abuja 'ahead of a possible re-election'
- There is no information related to the claim on INEC’s website as the commission last undertook a redeployment exercise back in August 2022
- Staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission transferred at the time were not exclusively ICT personnel
FCT, Abuja - Amid disputes over the 2023 presidential election, a Facebook user, John Nwaokorie, in early September, posted that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is redeploying some of its staff.
The social media user claimed the electoral body is overhauling its workforce and redeploying employees who work in its Information Communication Technology (ICT) department.
False that INEC redeployed staff
The claim comes amid legal battles between top opposition candidates, Atiku Abububakar (Peoples Democratic Party, PDP), Peter Obi (Labour Party, LP), and President Bola Ahmed Tinubu. After their loss at the tribunal, Messrs Atiku and Obi vowed to go to the Supreme Court to challenge the dismissal of their petitions against President Tinubu.
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The post partly reads:
“There may be a rerun for the presidential elections because they are transferring some directing staffs in ICT in Abuja, and those staffs are mostly from a particular region, where they perceive LP has more supporters.”
Furthermore, the poster stated that due to the redeployment, supposedly limited to an unnamed region, the remaining ICT staff are from the southwest and North.
The gravity of the claim prompted the fact-check.
On INEC's portal, there was nothing related to the claim on their news section.
The last time INEC redeployed some of its top hierarchy staff, including Resident Election Commissioners (RECs) and directors, was in August 2022. Legit.ng reported about this at the time.
It is noteworthy that the employees redeployed at the time were not ICT personnel. Contrary to the insinuation of ulterior motives, the deployment cut across national divide.
A fact-checking platform, Dubawa, said it called Festus Okoye, INEC's National Commissioner and Chairman of the Information and Voter Education Committee, for further comment, but he has yet to respond.
For these reasons, the insinuation that INEC redeployed its ICT staff because it fears a Tinubu defeat in court, is false.
Obi/Atiku vs Tinubu: Cleric shares prophecy
In a piece of related news, Legit.ng reported that Pastor Kingsley Okwuwe of the Revival and Restoration Global Mission said Obi would triumph at the Supreme Court.
Atiku is also taking the same route.