2011 Election Threatened: Court Stops INEC From Importing DDC Machines
ABUJA, Dec 04 (THEWILL) - The Federal High Court, Abuja Division Friday stopped the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from importing the Direct Data Capturing Machines, or any other equipment related to the registration of voters for the 2011 general elections or any other elections whatsoever, pending the hearing and determination of a suit filed before it by an indigenous firm, Bedding Holdings Limited. The firm sued INEC, its Chairman, Professor Attahiru Jega, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Bello Adoke, and three companies, Haier Electrical Appliances Corporation Ltd, Zinox Technologies Ltd and Avante International Technology Incorporated.
The company insisted that it was the only firm with the patent right to produce Electronic Collapsible Transparent Ballot Boxes, ECTBB, as well as the patentee in respect of Proof of Address System/Scheme, PASS, used for the collation and collection of the names and addresses, including the bio-data of every person resident in Nigeria. The presiding Judge, Justice Ibrahim Auta, subsequently granted the request and fixed substantive hearing for December 13, 2010.
The order reads, “that the Defendants/Respondents either by themselves, agents, privies, contractors, surrogates, or any other person or persons claiming through them, are restrained from continuing the process of considering proposals of tendering/bidding for, producing, procuring, supplying, acquiring, importing, buying, receiving, selling, leasing, alienating, applying or otherwise using the Direct Data Capturing Machines, Laptops and/or any other equipment ancillary to, or associated with the process and application of the said machines/equipment about to be supplied or being supplied by the 4th – 6th Defendants/ respondents to the 1st and 2nd Defendants/Respondents for the registration of voters and/or compilation, production and use of a Voters’ Register for the 2011 general elections or any other elections whatsoever, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on Notice for interlocutory injunction filed before this court.”