The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has been accused of using a third-party device to intercept and switch the 2023 presidential election results in favour of Bola Tinubu.
The allegation was by the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, in a 66-page petition lodged before the Presidential Election Petition Court sitting at the Court of Appeal in Abuja.
In the petition, the former vice president alleged that prior to the election, INEC redeployed its in-house ICT expert, Chidi Nwafor, and replaced him with an IT Consultant.
According to Atiku, the latter whose name is Suleiman Farouk helped in the installation of the third-party mechanism.
He further stated that the device was intermediated between the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) and the IRev Portal, known as Device Management System (DMS).
Atiku claims that the DMS software allowed Farouk to remotely control, monitor and filter data transmitted from the BVAS devices to the electronic collation system and the IRev platform.
“The 1st Respondent (INEC) engaged an appointee of the 2nd Respondent (INEC) to man and oversee the sensitive ICT Department of the 1st Respondent for the purpose of the Election.
“The petitioners contend and shall lead evidence to show that contrary to the original design of the BVAS machine to upload data directly to the electronic collation system and the IReV portal, the 1st Respondent contrived and installed an intervening third-party device (Device Management System) which, in its ordinary usage, is meant to secure and administer the 1st Respondent’s technological ecosystem for the elections but as it relates to the presidential election, was used to intercept the results, quarantine and warehouse same, and filter them before releasing same to the IReV portal.
“The 1st Respondent used the said Device Management System to manipulate the election results in favour of the 2nd and 3rd Respondents.
“The petitioners state and shall lead expert evidence to show the critical components of the 1st Respondent’s Information and Communications Technology, ICT, including but not limited to the BVAS which is an Android Device manufactured by Emperor Technologies China and supplied to the 1st Respondent by Activate Nigeria Limited.
“The Voter Accreditation System, VAS, which is the software that is used on the BVAS was previously designed and configured in-house and installed on the BVAS by the ICT Team of the 1st Respondent headed by Mr Chidi Nwafor.
“The VAS was subsequently handed over to Emperor Technology China prior to the Presidential Election and they then preconfigured and installed the software on the BVAS before supplying the devices to the 1st Respondent through Activate Nigeria Limited.
“As it relates to the IReV, the INEC Result Viewing Portal (IReV) is a web-based data entry and aggregation portal designed also by Chidi Nwafor’s team and is hosted on Amazon Web Service, AWS.
“The server system for the device and the portal are hosted on Amazon Web Service (AWS) URL:dashboard.ivasportal.com/dash,” he stated.
Speaking further, Atiku said that having set the parameters of the election, INEC “did not ensure compliance with the electronic transmission of accreditation data and results in the election to create opportunity for manipulation of figures to the advantage of the 2nd and 3rd Respondents”.
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