The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) yesterday told the Presidential Election Tribunal headed by President of the Court of Appeal Justice Ayo Salami that allowing the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) access to the biometrics data base of registered voters used for the April presidential election will jeopardise national security.
This is just as the Tribunal adjourned to August 29 for the interpretation its earlier order granting CPC access to INEC sensitive materials and also entertain CPC’s motion seeking to declare its presidential candidate in April general elections General Muhammadu Buhari as President would be heard.
The CPC had filed a motion praying the Tribunal to give the party judgment, alleging that the INEC disobeyed the tribunal’s order by denying the party access to the sensitive material used during the April 2011 President.
But in INEC’s counter affidavit, the commission said that if the CPC were allowed access to the data base, it would technically contravene the rights of the voters under the provisions of the Electoral Act and the Nigerian Constitution as a whole.
“This is because it would expose the identity of the voter and it would threaten our national security, this is our contention,” INEC counsel Hassan Liman said. He said that INEC did not disobey the court order as alleged by CPC.
“There is no disobedience to any court order, what happened is that they are not even entitled to apply for such judgment because what they had sought from the Court has been granted to them so they cannot come simply because they have not been granted access to database they would ask for judgment of the Court.