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Sunday, March 01, 2020

NITRA rides on DigitVote for successful e-Voting, gets new exco - ITREALMS


A landmark election conducted through electronic voting (e-Voting) by the Nigeria Information Technology Reporters’ Association (NITRA) gave birth to election of new Executive Committee (exco) to man its affairs for the next three years, reports ITREALMS.

The election, which was conducted at the office of the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA) in Lagos, saw three of the past EXCO members returned.

The election also saw all the candidates go unopposed except for the position of Secretary, which was contested between Mr. Chidiebere Nwankwo and Mr. Martin Ekpeke.

As a test of popularity, the unopposed positions still went through the election process where the Chairman, Mr. Chike Onwuegbuchi (Communications Week) polled 92.6 per cent of votes cast; Financial Secretary, Mr. Justus Adejumoh (Daily Independent) polled 88.9 per cent; Assistant Secretary, Bukola Olarenwaju (Business Remarks) got 92.6 per cent and treasurer, Mrs. Chioma Obiora-Ezike (Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria [FRCN]) got 96.3 per cent of votes. For the only contested position for Secretary of the Association, while Mr. Chidiebere Nwankwo won with a total of 70.4 per cent with 14.8 per cent of the voters abstaining.

However, the Electoral Committee disqualified the position of the Vice Chairman due to non-adherence to EC guidelines after due consultation. Rerun elections into the position and that of the Internal Auditor have been rescheduled for mid-March.

Speaking on the election process, the Chairman of the Electoral Committee, Mr. Aaron Ukodie, noted that the Committee decided on the use of e-Voting tagged DigitVote powered by DigitalSENSE Africa Media, because NITRA should be at the forefront of promoting digital processes in Nigeria.

“We were able to put a technology-based process in place; and as technology people, we had to make sure that we set the pace,” Mr. Ukodie said.

According to the Chairman, although there were challenges in the process, the use of e-Voting system proved to be the best process in this era of digitization as it ensured that no member, present or absent, was disenfranchised during the election.

He thanked the Executive Committee and the entire membership of NITRA for their cooperation through the period of the elections.

Also speaking, the outgoing NITRA Chairman, Mr. Emma Okonji narrated the vision behind the formation of NITRA and thanked the executive committee for working with him assiduously towards maintaining the vision.

He charged the incoming EXCO to raise the NITRA flag higher and not be daunted by challenges that will come.

“You will face challenges, both internally and externally, my administration did as well. But I encourage you not to fazed by it, once you know you are doing the right things, you will overcome the challenges,” he advised.

In his acceptance speech on behalf of the new executives, the Chairman, Mr. Onwuegbuchi noted that the task ahead is to build upon the achievements of the previous administration.

While promising that all campaign promises by the new EXCO will be implemented, he called on members to come together to ensure that NITRA takes its pride of place in the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) ecosystem.

NITRA was inaugurated in 2014 to engender faster industry growth through collaboration with industry stakeholders on different fronts in and outside the country.

The new EXCO has a three-year tenure that ends in 2023 before a new election is conducted.

ITREALMS notes that DigitVote© is an electronic voting (eVoting) platform developed primarily to assistant groups and organisations to entrench a transparent procedure through electioneering processes. DigitVote© is also an electronically aided casting and counting of votes. This involves transmission of ballots and votes via computer networks or the internet with infographic outputs, which can be organizationally customized to meet client needs. DigitVote© is powered by DigitalSENSE Africa Media.

Chuks Egbune/Editor

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Pix: Newly-elected Executive Committee (EXCO) members of the Nigeria Information Technology Reporters Association (NITRA) after receiving their certificate of Returns. L-R: Chidiebere Nwankwo (Secretary); Chioma Obiora-Ezike (Treasurer); Chike Onwuegbuchi (Chairman); Bukola Olarenwaju (Asst. Secretary); Justus Adejumoh (Financial Secretary).

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