By Yemi Adeleye/Augusta Uchediuno
Lagos – Dr. Qasim Akinreti, the Chairman, Lagos Council of the Nigeria Union of Journals (NUJ), has commended journalists in the state for their perseverance and professional conduct during the general elections.
Akinreti made the commendation on Sunday in an with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) during the collation of the governorship election results at the Lagos state office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Sabo-Yaba.
He said: “It is a done deal. We started early yesterday and we are almost ending the process.
“It is instructive to note that the media gave a good account of themselves. We gave our platforms to all the candidates before and during the elections, with a lot of hardship that we went through.
“I need to give a thumbs up to our colleagues, they have been strictly professional,” he said.
Akinreti frowned at the low voter turnout but described the electoral process as largely fair and peaceful, in spite of pockets of issues.
He urged the winners in the entire contest to be magnanimous in victory.
He also advised the losers to take the outcome of the polls in good faith and spirit of good sportsmanship.
He urged INEC to improve on the areas of noticeable lapses and ensure adequate training and better welfare for its ad-hoc staff members for greater credibility in future elections.
According to Akinreti, INEC should work more on logistics and learn how to deploy technology fully to end most of the challenges it is handling manually.
“The world has gone beyond some of these things. Ad-hoc staff allowance and other incentives should be paid as at when due,” he said.
He regretted that some of the ad-hoc personnel slept on the bare floor during the polls.
He further advocated a more “conducive and convivial atmosphere” for the collation of results, saying that the exercise could also be done oustside INEC offices.