Prof. Itse Sagay, the Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), has described the 2023 election in Nigeria as the best so far.
He made this statement during an interview on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics.
Sagay commended the role of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) in the election.
He further stated that the election was credible, even though the All Progressives Congress (APC) lost in its stronghold, Lagos State.
The 2023 presidential election saw Asiwaju Bola Tinubu of the APC emerge as the winner amid criticism that the election was marred by violence.
However, front-line contenders such as Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP) have challenged the outcome of the poll.
Despite these challenges, Sagay maintained that the election was credible, citing the use of BVAS and the loss of APC in Lagos State as proof of its fairness.
He said, “In my personal opinion, in terms of representing the minds and wishes of Nigerians in an election, this is probably the best election we have had.”
According to him, the previous elections especially during other democratic dispensations were marred by irregularities.
He said, “So, we had good elections in 2011, 2015, and 2019. But in terms of representing or interpreting what Nigerians feel, it is the best election we have ever had.
“If you look at the ways things have gone with the BVAS (Bimordal Voter Accreditation System), the very idea that the APC was defeated in Lagos, that should make you realise immediately that these are very credible elections. If you go through the whole country, it is the same sort of accuracy and reflection on the feelings of Nigerians.”
Sagay claimed that the 2023 elections were determined by ethnicity, religion, and organisational skills.
The PACAC boss said, “But above all, what gave Tinubu the edge was his capacity to organise, plan and plant agencies and supporters and various administrative bodies all over the states in the country.
“So, that in my view is the explanation of what happened,” he added. “So, I believe it expressed the true mind of Nigerians as of today. There is something natural about the results.”
Meanwhile, Sagay, said the Labour Party “did excellently well” in some areas, especially in the South-East but rued the party’s “abysmal results” in the North-East and North-West regions.