By Angela Atabo
#TrackNigeria: A Civil Society Organisation (CSO), Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) on Thursday said it would deploy a Global Positioning System (GPS) tracker to monitor the 2019 general elections.
Ms Idayat Hassan, CDD director while addressing a news conference on the centre’s “One-Stop-Shop for Analysis” of the 2019 General Elections’’, said that the centre would also inaugurate an election app for effective observation.
Hassan who was represented by Mr Shamsudeen Yusuf, a Senior Programmes Officer in organisation, said that the newly developed GPS-enabled CDD election tracker would be deployed to enable accredited field observers report on the election process.
“The tracker will also help us track where the observers are reporting from for quality control purposes.
“The tracker is developed in a way that also allows citizens and journalists to register and report only on incidents on the day of elections.
“The Centre is also deploying Telerivet – SMS-based platform for reporting and documenting data relating to Election Day activities.’’
Hassan said that the centre had also concluded its plan to inaugurate an Election Analysis Centre (EAC) as a “One-Stop-Shop’’ for rigorous analysis of the 2019 general elections.
She said that the EAC would be located at Fraser Suite, 294 Leventis Close, Central Business District, FCT, Abuja.
According to her, it is aimed at providing accurate and real-time analysis of events in the build-up to the polls, election day and post-election period in a more captivating, enriching and systematic manner.
She said that it would also provide informed analysis grounded in historical facts and data spanning 1999-2015 general elections, inclusive of off-cycle polls in the country.
Hassan said that 3,500 trained observers would be deployed to monitor the elections in all the 36 states, the 774 Local Government Areas (LGAs) and the 2,642 political wards in the country.
The CDD director said that the observers were being trained to carefully observe and report back on the accreditation and voting process, including movement of sensitive materials, opening of units, setting up of polling units, and accreditation and voting.
She said that the CDD’s EAC would have political scientists, historians, gender, conflict experts, data analyst and communication experts who would interrogate pre-election, Election Day and post-election events from a contemporary and historical lens
Hassan said that embedded in this analysis centre would be CDD’s fake news centre, adding that fake news could trigger fear and violence during election.
This, she said was the reason for CDD’s fact-checking team to spot, identify, investigate and counter fake news during the elections.
“For the first time in the history of Nigeria, there will be a live telecast of election analysis by a CSO tagged #Decision2019 on Arise TV available on DSTV Channel 416, Sky 519 and GoTV Channel 44.’’ She said.
She said the aim was to create a platform for impartial analysis using evidence and data to explain polls to the citizens.
Hassan said that the programme would inform voters about procedural matters and arrangements for the conduct of the elections, serve as a non-partisan platform for INEC to communicate its messages to the electorate.
Mr Damilola Praiseworth, Communications Officer, CDD said that the centre was leveraging on technology to examine the integrity of the elections.
Praiseworth said that this became imperative due to the loose link in Nigeria’s election collation process, adding that CDD and Policy Legal Advocacy Centre (situation room) was partnering to operate an Election Fusion Centre (EFC).
He said that EFC would tally and verify election results from all the 8,809 ward collation centres (WCCs) across the country.
CDD was partnering with Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA), MacArthur Foundation, National Endowment for Democracy (NED), and National Democratic Institute (NDI), among others to achieve this. (NAN)