Presidential candidate in the recently held election of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Chief Joe-Kyari Gadzama SAN has called for an audit of the poll in the light of perceived irregularities.
Read Chief Gadzama’s full statement:
As you may recall, the National Election of the Nigerian Bar Association (‘NBA’) was concluded on Saturday, July 16, 2022.
My utmost appreciation goes to the members of the Electoral Committee of the NBA (‘ECNBA’) who conducted our election. I respect each of them and commend their efforts. I equally salute all the contestants who vied for various positions.
It is pertinent to state that before the conduct of the election, my agent – Mr Andrew Madaki tested the vulnerability of the website to conduct the election – electionbuddy.com. The report, which is attached to this release, shows that the website was susceptible to manipulation.
Thereafter, my agent and other agents present raised some of these concerns during the press briefing conducted by the ECNBA on the eve of the election.
During the conduct of the election, my agent discovered numerous irregularities and expressed same by a letter sent via email to the ECNBA at 2:00 pm. The same is attached to this release. In the email, he reported the frequent timeouts experienced by the site, lack of access to the backend of the server, lack of graphical representation of the results and ultimately requested to audit the election, which the ECNBA promised to provide immediately.
After the conduct of the election, my agent sent a reminder to the ECNBA on Sunday, July 17, 2022 to audit the election and discover if there were more irregularities but same has not been provided by the ECNBA.
After the conduct of the election, my agent engaged another IT specialist to test the server. The report of the specialist which was dated Monday, July 18, 2022 also shows that there is a high likelihood that the system could be hacked and manipulated. A follow-up report by my agent dated Wednesday, July 20, 2022 confirms that this occurrence was more than likely. I have been advised that this is why the percentage score among all the three Presidential candidates remained within the same range from the commencement of voting till the end. This, as I have been advised, is not human behavior but mechanical.
It is important to re-iterate that auditing the election will permit independent parties and agents to discover if there were any technical interferences to usurp the will of the electorate. This access is expected to have been provided immediately after the conclusion of the poll to prevent any party from tampering with the system.
Pre-Qualification of Technical Consultant to ECNBA
On Friday, June 24, 2022, I invited numerous IT specialists to advise me. One of them was Mr Mohammed Mustapha who I asked to provide information security and communication strategy in the just-concluded NBA Election; however, on Monday, June 27, 2022, Mr Mustapha declined my offer as a result of conflict of interest because he had earlier applied to the ECNBA to act as a consultant. After declining my request, Mr Mustapha informed me that although he had applied to be a consultant to the ECNBA before the deadline, the ECNBA did not list his company as one that had applied; rather only two companies were listed before one was selected to provide the consultancy. The two referenced letters are attached.
Also attached to this release are: (i) the notice released by the ECNBA asking for proposals for a technical consultant titled ‘Request for Proposal for Technical Support Consultant to the ECNBA – Submission Reminder Notice’, (ii) acknowledged copy of the bid by Mr Mustapha titled ‘Re: Request for Proposal for Technical Support Consultant to the ECNBA’ received by the ECNBA at 3:35 pm on 22/4/22, and (iii) the notice displaying companies that applied titled ‘Respondents to Request for Proposal for Technical Support Consultant’.
On the whole, and in view of the above facts and attached documents, it is clear that the technology adopted was highly vulnerable and most susceptible to electronic fraud, rigging and pre-programming of votes. I hereby call upon the ECNBA to allow an immediate audit of the election and server.
Dated this Wednesday, the 20th day of July, 2022
Joe-Kyari Gadzama OFR, MFR, SAN
- Vulnerability report dated Sunday, July 10, 2022;
- Complaint letter dated Saturday, July 16, 2022;
- Email reminder to the ECNBA on Sunday, July 17, 2022;
- Vulnerability report dated Monday, July 18, 2022;
- NBA National Elections 2022: Report dated Wednesday, July 20, 2022;
- Provision of information security and communication strategy for the forthcoming NBA election dated Friday, June 24, 2022;
- Re: Provision of information security and communication strategy for the forthcoming NBA National Elections dated Monday, June 27, 2022;
- Request for proposal for technical support consultant to the ECNBA – Submission Reminder Notice dated April 21, 2022;
- Re: Request for Proposal for Technical Support Consultant to the ECNBA dated April 22, 2022; and
- Respondents to Request for Proposal for Technical Support Consultant dated April 25, 2022.