The Youth Initiative for Advocacy Growth and Advancement Africa has deployed Parallel Vote Tabulation methodology to monitor the credibility of election result during the Edo State governorship election.

The PVT is an advanced election observation methodology that employs well-established statistical principles and sophisticated information technology in providing timely and accurate information on the conduct of accreditation, voting, and counting, and it independently verifies the official governorship results as announced by the INEC.

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YIAGA noted that the deployment of PVT will ensure that results announced at the polling booth are not tampered with at the collation centres.

The group noted that the mechanism has been tested and proven in over 50 countries including Nigeria -- most recently by YIAGA Africa in the November 2019 Kogi and Bayelsa governorship elections where it detected fraud and manipulation of results collation and declined to verify the official results declared by INEC.

The group also vowed to expose any form of electoral malpractice and result manipulation during the September 19 election.

In a statement by the Chair of YIAGA Africa election observation mission for Edo State, Dr Aisha Abdullahi; and the YIAGA Africa Executive Director, Samson Itodo; the organisation stated that it would deploy 500 stationary observers to a representative statistical sample of 250 polling units and 25 mobile observers in all 18 LGAs as well as 18 collation centre observers to each of the LGA collation centres.

“The observers will observe the conduct of the process and provide systematic, accurate, and timely information on the election day process. Specifically, YIAGA Africa will provide accurate information on the quality of the election day process and ascertain if the official results announced by INEC reflects the total votes cast.

“Since PVT is based on official results from a representative random sample of polling units, YIAGA Africa will estimate the state-wide results for the governorship election within a narrow range based on well-established statistical principles.

“If INEC's official results fall within YIAGA Africa's estimated range, then the public, political parties, and candidates should have confidence that the official results reflect the ballots cast at polling units; however, if the announced results have been manipulated and do not match the polling units' results, YIAGA Africa will expose it,” the group said.

In assessing whether the 2020 Edo governorship election satisfies the electoral integrity test, YIAGA Africa said it will consider a range of issues such as shortcomings in the pre-election period, the quality of election day processes, and the scale and scope of critical incidents.

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