Kogi Guber: I lack requisite credentials to review BVAS — Says SDP star witness

Governor Ahmed Usman Ododo and Alhaji Muritala Yakubu Ajaka

Kogi Guber: I lack requisite credentials to review BVAS — Says SDP star witness

In a dramatic turn of events at the Kogi Tribunal on March 25th, 2024, the star witness presented by the Social Democratic Party (SDP) cast doubt on the reliability of the Biometric Voter Authentication System (BVAS) and denied being present in Kogi State on Election Day.

Read: Kogi poll: Legal practitioners, activists uncover SDP’s Ajaka plan to file petition through backdoor as 21 days window elapses

The courtroom was abuzz with tension as the defense counsel representing the All Progressives Congress (APC), led by Agabi, SAN, initiated the cross-examination of the SDP’s star witness, a staff member of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) tasked with demonstrating the BVAS machine.

Under intense scrutiny, the witness, identified as AbdulMalik, disavowed any involvement as a Presiding Officer (PO) during the recent elections in the State. When pressed on his whereabouts on Election Day, AbdulMalik asserted that he was in Imo State, further undermining his credibility as a witness for the SDP.

Crucially, the cross-examination delved into the functionality and integrity of the BVAS machine. The defense counsel highlighted discrepancies in the witness’s presentation, noting the absence of essential components such as Form E8-A and photographs, which are supposed to be attached to the BVAS.

AbdulMalik’s admission that he did not possess records of all the BVAS machines used in the Kogi elections raised further concerns about the transparency and accountability of the electoral process. The witness’s lack of familiarity with key procedures outlined in the INEC manual for governorship elections added to the mounting skepticism surrounding his testimony.

INEC’s lawyers also joined the fray, questioning the witness on the BVAS’s vulnerability to manipulation and the absence of written authorization from the Attorney General of the Federation. AbdulMalik’s responses underscored the potential loopholes and security risks inherent in the BVAS system, including the ability for unauthorized individuals to access the device and the possibility of reconfiguration for alternative purposes.

As the cross-examination drew to a close, the Tribunal Judge intervened, adjourning the sitting until the following day, March 26th, 2024. The proceedings left lingering doubts over the credibility of the SDP’s case and raised broader questions about the integrity of the electoral process in Kogi State.

With the spotlight now firmly on the BVAS and the testimonies presented before the Tribunal, stakeholders await further developments as the legal battle for electoral legitimacy unfolds in the days ahead.

http://The NCW had written to the EC demanding strict action against Congress leaders Supriya Shrinate and H.S. Ahir for their derogatory comments against actress Kangana, who is the BJP candidate from Mandi Lok Sabha seat. Follow live updates here: https://newsth.live/kcQl9V

Stay tuned for more updates as the Kogi Tribunal proceedings continue to captivate the nation’s attention.

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