No voting points for Anambra guber – INEC
…56,872 new polling units created across Nigeria
…Ekiti, Osun guber elections to hold June, July 2022
THERE will be no voting points during the forthcoming November 6 Anambra governorship election.
Chairman of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, dropped the hint after a meeting with Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) at the Commission’s headquartres in Abuja, yesterday, while giving update on its preparedness to ensure that the exercise would be free, fair and credible in line with global best practices.
According to Yakubu, INEC abolished the use of voting points in elections to avoid pitfalls of previous elections in which voting points became a source of problem which INEC seeks to avert by creating more polling units across the federation.
“For subsequent elections, beginning from the Anambra governorship election holding on November 6, there will be no voting points any more in Nigeria. This is part of the reasons we created new polling units across the country. Looking to the near future, the commission is preparing to conduct the remaining off-season end of tenure elections ahead of the 2023 general elections. Already, activities listed in the timetable for the Anambra State Governorship election are being implemented. So too are those of the FCT Area Council election holding on February 12, 2022,” he said.
Calling for a rancour-free primaries and peaceful electioneering campaigns, Prof Yakubu stated that timetable and schedule of activities for the elections can be found on INEC’s website and its social media platforms.
Similarly, the electoral umpire has successfully converted 56,872 voting points and voting point settlements to Polling Units (PUs), increasing the number of PUs from 119,974 to 176,846 in Nigeria.
INEC chairman, Prof. Yakubu said the commission had also relocated 749 polling units from inappropriate locations made up of private property, royal palaces, Mosques, Churches and Shrines to appropriate public facilities or open space.
“Before 2010, INEC operated on a round figure of approximately 120,000 PUs; but arrived at a precise figure of 119,973 polling units after a census. After wide ranging consultations with stakeholders and fieldwork by our officials, the 56,872 voting points and voting point settlements were converted and added to the existing 119,974 polling units.
Consequently, the commission is glad to report that 25 years since the current polling units were created in 1996, the hard nut is finally and successfully cracked after several unsuccessful attempts. Nigeria now has 176,846 full-fledged polling units. Similarly, after consultation with stakeholders, the commission has successfully removed 749 polling units from inappropriate locations to appropriate public facilities or open spaces in line with our policy to guarantee unencumbered access to polling units for all voters. Of this figure, 232 were removed from private property, 145 royal palaces, six from Mosques, 21 from Churches and nine from Shrines.
The remaining 336 polling units were relocated for various reasons, which include distance, difficult terrain, congestion, communal conflict, new settlements and general insecurity,” Yakubu said.
Also, the 2022 governorship elections slated for Ekiti and Osun States have been scheduled to hold on Saturday, June 18 and Saturday, July 16, respectively.
INEC Chairman, Prof. Yakubu said the commission was announcing the dates in advance to ensure that the exercise suffers no hitch.
“In keeping with our policy of announcing the dates of elections in advance to enable early and effective preparations by all concerned, the commission has approved that the Ekiti State Governorship election will hold on Saturday, June 18, 2022, while the Osun State Governorship election will hold one month later on Saturday, July 16, 2022,” he said.
The new approved polling units for the 36 states and the FCT were unveiled and presented to the public at the meeting.
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