Section 57-65 Nigerian Electoral Act 2022
Section 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65 of the Nigerian Electoral Act 2022, among others, are under Part IV of the Act. Part IV is titled PROCEDURE AT ELECTION.
Section 57 Nigeria Electoral Act 2022
Impersonation by applicant to vote
(1) If at the time a person applies to vote and before he or she has left the polling unit, a Polling Agent, polling unit official or security agent informs the Presiding officer that he or she has reasonable cause to believe that the person is under the age of 18 years or has committed the offence of impersonation and gives an undertaking on a prescribed form to substantiate the charge in a court of law, the Presiding officer may order a police officer to arrest that person and the Presiding officer’s order shall be sufficient authority for the police officer to act.
(2) A person in respect of whom a Polling Agent, polling official, or security agent gives an infonnation in accordance with the provision of subsection (1) shall not by reason of the infonnation, be prevented from voting, but the Presiding officer shall cause the words “protested against for impersonation” to be placed against his or her name in the marked copy of the register of voters or part of the register of voters.
(3) Where a person in respect of whom a declaration is made under subsection (2), admits to the Presiding officer that he or she is not the person he or she held themselves out to be, he or she shall not be permitted to vote and shall be handed
over to the police or security agent.
(4) A person arrested under this section shall be deemed to be a person taken into
custody by a police officer.
Section 58 Nigeria Electoral Act 2022
Conduct at polling units
(1) The presiding officer shall regulate the admission of voters to the polling unit and shall exclude all persons other than the candidates, polling agents, poll clerks and persons lawfully entitled to be admitted including accredited observers, and the
Presiding officer shall keep order and comply with the requirements of this Act at the polling unit.
(2) The presiding officer may order a person to be removed from a polling unit, who behaves in a disorderly manner or fails to obey a lawful order.
(3) A person removed from a polling unit under this section shall not, without the permission of the presiding officer, again enter the polling unit during the day of the election, and if charged with the commission of an offence in that polling unit, the
person shall be deemed to be a person taken into custody by a police officer for an offence in respect of which he may be arrested without a warrant.
(4) The provisions of subsection (3) shall not be enforced so as to prevent a voter who is otherwise entitled to vote at a polling unit from having an opportunity of voting.
(5) In the absence of the presiding officer, the poll clerk shall enjoy and exercise all the powers of the presiding officer in respect of a polling unit.
Section 59 Nigeria Electoral Act 2022
Closing of poll
At the prescribed hour for the close of poll, the Presiding officer shall declare the poll closed and no more person shall be admitted into the Polling unit and only those already inside the polling unit shall be allowed to vote.
Section 60 Nigeria Electoral Act 2022
Counting of votes and forms
(1) The Presiding officer shall, after counting the votes at the polling unit, enter the votes scored by each candidate in a form to be prescribed by the Commission as the case may be.
(2) The form shall be signed and stamped by the presiding officer and counter signed by the candidates or their polling agents where available at the polling unit.
(3) The presiding officer shall give to the polling agents and the police officer where available a copy each of the completed forms after it has been duly signed as provided under subsection (2).
(4) The presiding officer shall count and announce the result at the polling unit.
(5) The presiding officer shall transfer the results including total number of accredited voters and the results of the ballot in a manner as prescribed by the Commission.
(6) A presiding officer who wilfully contravenes any provision of this section commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine not more than N5 00,000 or imprisonment for a term of at least six months.
Section 61 Nigeria Electoral Act 2022
A candidate or a polling agent may, where present at a polling unit when counting of votes is completed by the presiding officer, demand to have the votes recounted provided that the presiding officer shall cause the votes to be so recounted only once.
Section 62 Nigeria Electoral Act 2022
Post-election procedure and collation of election results
(1) After the recording and announcement of the result, the presiding officer shall deliver same along with election materials under security and accompanied by the candidates or their polling agents, where available, to such person as may be prescribed by the Commission.
(2) The Commission shall compile, maintain and update, on a continuous basis, a
register of election results to be known as the National Electronic Register of Election Results which shall be a distinct database or repository of polling unit by polling unit results, including collated election results, of each election conducted by the Commission in the Federation, and the Register of Election Results shall be kept in electronic format by the Commission at its national headquarters.
(3) Any person or political party may obtain from the Commission, on payment of such fees as may be determined by the Commission, a certified true copy of any election result kept in the National Electronic Register of Election Results for a State, Local Government, Area Council, registration area or Electoral Ward or Polling Unit, as the case may be, and the certified true copy may be in printed or electronic format.
Section 63 Nigeria Electoral Act 2022
Rejection of ballot paper without official mark
(1) Subject to subsection (2), a ballot paper which does not bear official mark prescribed by the Commission shall not be counted.
(2) If the returning officer is satisfied that a ballot paper which does not bear the official mark was from a book of ballot papers which was furnished to the presiding officer of the polling unit in which the vote was cast for use at the election in question, he or she shall, notwithstanding the absence of the official mark, count that ballot paper.
Section 64 Nigeria Electoral Act 2022
Endorsement on rejected ballot paper without official mark
(1) The presiding officer shall endorse the word “rejected” on the ballot paper rejected under section 52 (1) of this Act and for any other reason, and the ballot papers shall not be counted except otherwise allowed by the returning officer who may overrule the presiding officer.
(2) If an objection to the decision of a presiding officer to reject a ballot paper is raised by a candidate or a polling agent at the time the decision is made, the presiding officer shall add to the word “rejected”, the phrase “but objected to”.
(3) The presiding officer shall prepare a statement on rejected ballot papers, stating the number rejected, the reason for rejection and their serial number, and he or she shall on request, allow a candidate or a polling agent to copy the statement.
(4) A collation officer or returning officer at an election shall collate and announce the result of an election, subject to his or her verification and confirmation that the –
(a) number of accredited voters stated on the collated result are correct and consistent with the number of accredited voters recorded and transmitted directly from polling units under section 47 (2) of this Act;
(b) the votes stated on the collated result are correct and consistent with the votes
or results recorded and transmitted directly from polling units under section
60 (4) of this Act.
(5) Subject to subsection (1), a collation officer or returning officer shall use the number of accredited voters recorded and transmitted directly from polling units under section 47 (2) of this Act and the votes or results recorded and transmitted directly from polling units under section 60 (4) of this Act to collate and announce the result of an election if a collated result at his or a lower level of collation is not correct.
(6) Where during collation of results, there is a dispute regarding a collated result or the result of an election from any polling unit, the collation officer or returning officer shall use the following to determine the correctness of the disputed result –
(a) the original of the disputed collated result for each polling unit where the
election is disputed;
(b) the smart card reader or other technology device used for accreditation of
voters in each polling unit where the election is disputed for the purpose of
obtaining accreditation data directly from the smart card reader or technology
(c) data of accreditation recorded and transmitted directly from each polling unit
where the election is disputed as prescribed under section 47 (2) of this Act; and
(d) the votes and result of the election recorded and transmitted directly from
each polling unit where the election is disputed, as prescribed under section 60 (4) of this Act.
(7) If the disputed result under subsection (6) were otherwise found not to be correct, the collation officer or returning officer shall re-collate and announce a new result
using the information in subsection (6) (a)-(d).
(8) Where the dispute under subsection (6) arose at the level of collation and the returning officer has satisfied the provision of subsection (6) (a)-(d), the returning officer shall accordingly declare the winner of the election.
(9) A returning officer or collation officer, as the case may be, commits an offence if he or she intentionally collates or announces a false result and is liable on conviction to a fine of N5,000,000 or imprisonment for a term of at least three years or both.
Section 65 Nigeria Electoral Act 2022
Decision of returning officer on ballot paper
(1) The decision of the returning officer shall be final on any question arising from or relating to –
(a) unmarked ballot paper;
(b) rejected ballot paper; and
(c) declaration of scores of candidates and the return of a candidate:
Provided that the Commission shall have the power within seven days to review the
declaration and return where the Commission determines that the said declaration and return was not made voluntarily or was made contrary to the provisions of the law, regulations and guidelines, and manual for the election.
(2) A decision of the returning officer under subsection (1) may be reviewed by an election tribunal or court of competent jurisdiction in an election petition proceedings under this Act.