Ahead of the Ekiti Governorship Election, the Independent National Electoral Commission is currently in a security meeting with the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) for hitch free election.
The Chairman Independent National Electoral Commission Professor Mahmood Yakubu has directed all the Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) to liaise with the security agencies and stakeholders on the possibility of reopening some of the centres earlier closed because of insecurity.
The INEC Chairman gave this directive today 3rd June 2022 at the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) Meeting at INEC Headquarters, Abuja to review the security arrangements for Ekiti Election and to review situation with the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) and the Commissioner of Police (CP) and to discuss on the state of readiness for the election.
Prof Yakubu said the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) must always bear in mind the safety of registrants and registration officials. “Furthermore, the RECs are directed to do more to provide information, increase awareness of the processes and more promptly respond to genuine complaints by citizenship said.
“Unfortunately, the security situation in many parts of the country has not allowed full deployment as planned. In some States of the Federation, INEC registration officers were attacked resulting not only in the unfortunate destruction of buildings and loss of equipment, but even worse, the death of a staff. This has forced the closure of some of the registration centres” he said.
Commission Chairman also gave updates on Commission’s preparations Ekiti Governorship election, Prof Yakubu said all the major activities that are supposed to be carried out at this stage have been successfully undertaken.
“We visited our offices in several Local Government Areas, held meetings with our staff, had audience with the Council of Obas to solicit the support of their Royal Majesties for peaceful elections and met with the security agencies, meet with the stakeholders and for the signing of the Peace Accord by political parties and candidates under the auspices of the National Peace Committee.
“We also observed the ongoing training of ad hoc staff and the deployment of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) for mock accreditation of voters in some Polling Units across the three Senatorial Districts of the State.
With the release of the Regulations and Guidelines today, and the publication of the Strategic Plan (SP) 2022-2026 and Election Project Plan 2023 earlier, the Commission has virtually concluded the planning processes for the 2023 General Election nine months ahead of the election. In the next couple of weeks, the training manual will also be presented to Nigerians. Going forward, the Commission will focus on election administration: logistics, training, voter education, technology, sensitization against vote buying, inclusivity measures and, above all, security. ICCES will continue to play a critical role and the Commission appreciates the support of all security agencies.
In his remarks, representative of the National Security Adviser, Sanusi Galadima said, commended the military, Police and other security agencies for preparation put in place for the forth coming Ekiti governorship election, adding that the two offholder received are incompasses everything to pose a security threat in the Ekiti State Election, if the police IG and intelligence community will religiously add to the offholder, the NSA is very optimistic that the Ekiti election will be conducted smoothly without any rancor.
The NSA is abreast regarding the security situation in Ekiti State especially from IGP and other intelligence communities.
The NSA directed that all security agencies and those who will be involved in Ekiti Election and subsequent election in Osun State, they have nothing to fear, the Federal government is fully in support in other logistics and other issues conserving the election will be provided.
He expressed appreciation to INEC chairman, and other national resident commissioners for collaboration to ensure a hitch free election appreciated the existing collaboration, cooperation in the previous election. “Political activities are going on to round up primary elections towards the 2023 General Elections. It is obviously expected that party campaigns will commerce immediately after primary elections.
He therefore, urged Security Advisers members to be fully prepared to ensure that smooth conduct of elections are forestall.
The inter-agency consultative Committee on election security meeting has in attendance the NSA and Co-Chair of ICCES, Heads of various security agencies, National Commissioners,The Resident Electoral Commissioner for Ekiti State and Other members of ICCES, The Commissioner of Police, Ekiti State, Secretary to the Commission, Senior Officials of the Commission, Members of the INEC Press Corps.