Following the heated-up protest by Mr. Orubebe that further heightened the already present tension at the National Collation Centre as the entire world awaits the summation of the presidential polls and announcement of the winner, a somewhat humorous incident occurred.
The next report was supposed to be that of Rivers state and the returning officer was the Vice chancellor of the Federal University of Petroleum Resources, Warri, Delta state, Prof. John Etu-Efeotor.
The professor, on mounting the podium, found it extremely difficult reading the results. It is not clear whether it was out of the abundance of his sense of humour or it was just an attempt to make up for his apparent visual impairment, but Prof. Etu-Efeotor took it upon himself to douse the political tension in the arena by making sharp witty remarks which kept almost everyone present cracked up.
Even the security detail behind the INEC chairmen could not help their emotions before the camera as they were also seen laughing quite hard. Except for Jega who requested that a studio light be brought closer so the returning officer could see clearly.
This, however, didn’t help the situation and an assistant helped out with the reading of the results from Rivers state.
The INEC chairman also used the opportunity to address the controversy surrounding the results from Rivers state as the APC had earlier called for a cancellation of the results.
” We do not believe that the allegations are substantial enough to require the cancellation of the elections in Rivers,” he said.
“Sunday morning, I received a petition from APC demanding for the cancellation and rescheduling of elections. I circulated this memo to the commission. We reviewed it and set up a three man committee to Rivers and returned this morning with their observations.
” There were a number of points as to why the commission should cancel/reschedule elections 1) No elections 2)No result sheets 3) Substitution of result sheets,” Jega concluded.
At the time of this report the collation exercise was still in progress.