My Perspective On The Flawed 2023 General Elections, By Elempe Dele 

ALTHOUGH several countries, such as the United Kingdom, China, the United States, Egypt, Niger, Ghana and a host of others have congratulated the winner, Senator Ahmed Tinubu, some also charged the Independent Electoral Commission, INEC, to improve on the electoral process and called for those who have genuine grievances to pursue them through the judiciary system.
INEC, on it’s own in spite of the obvious flaws in the process called the election free, fair and credible, even  when several observers, including the European Union, said the election was not as transparent as expected. A joint observer mission of the International Republican Institute and the National Democratic Institute said, “The election fell well short of Nigerian citizens’ reasonable expectations.” Samson Itodo, the head of YIAGA Africa, said there were serious concerns about the elections process because major issues such as violence and technical problems had hampered public trust in the election process. Nigeria’s main opposition parties, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and the Labour Party, LP, said the results of the election were “heavily doctored and manipulated” in a joint news conference. “We won this election as Labour Party, we are going to claim our mandate as Labour Party,” said Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed, the party’s vice presidential candidate. Ndi Kato, the Labour Party’s presidential campaign spokesperson, said, “We are defiant. The elections were rigged. These statements are not also far from statements made by PDP and several of its spokespersons, including the serial presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.
My point of departure from these rings of imperfections, which were both humans and technological, remains that the personal integrity of the chairman of the commission, INEC, Prof. Mahmoud, is not in question in my own estimation. The  results from the 36 states including the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, does not show they were willfully manipulated by the commission. At best, people freely voted their conscience, and such relatively new and unknown parties won in unexpected places. In a manipulated election, the candidate of Labour Party who cleared all Eastern states with very wide margins could not have been allowed to win in Lagos State, the adopted state of Senator Ahmed Tinubu, the now president-elect. He has held the politics of Lagos State since 1999 until the Labour Party defeated him there on the 25th, a blow no political analyst or pundit saw coming.
Again, PDP won the presidential election in Osun State, the ancestral home of Tinubu while APC cleared Oyo State including other elective positions which has cast doubt on the reelection of the incumbent governor, H.E, Seyi Makinde.
In Edo State, under the embattled Godwin Obaseki, that has always had PDP win presidential elections since 1999 was overran by the force of the Labour Party and even got a senatorial seat to add to its kitty.
In an election where the 9 months old Peter Obi Labour Party won Delta, Cross Rivers, Plateau, FCT and  Nasarawa States cannot be said to be manipulated by the commission. An election where PDP won Osun, a Yoruba State, won Kastina State, the home state of President Buhari, cannot be said to be manipulated by INEC in favour of any of the contestants. In an election where the South West candidate, Tinubu, won in the north; Borno, Zamfara, Kogi, Niger, Jigawa and Kwara States, with two candidates from the zone cannot be said to be a manipulated election.
Is it not in this same election a legislative aide, Nedun Imasuen, won a senate seat in Edo and an Okada rider, Donatus Mathew, won a House of Representives seat under the Labour Party in Kaduna State against all odds? Even in Nasarawa State, the fairly unknown party, Social Democratic Party, SDP, won a senate seat. Ireti Kingibe of the Labour Party defeated the incumbent Senator, Philip Aduda, in this same election in FCT. It is this same election three of the G5 PDP governors lost their elections. Ortom lost his election bid for Benue North West Senatorial District in the National Assembly to the APC candidate, Titus Zam. Ugwuanyi lost his bid to represent Enugu North Senatorial District in the National Assembly to the Labour Party candidate, Okechukwu Uzea. While similarly, Ikpeazu lost his bid to represent Abia South Senatorial District to Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA)
So in my opinion, the election though was marred by some irregularities, it was not manipulated by the commission for any particular candidate as being painted by some sections of the losers. As advised, they can seek legal redress if they so deem it fit.