INEC intensifies preparation for Ekiti guber poll

INEC Chairman Mahmood Yakubu
INEC Chairman Mahmood Yakubu

Ariwodola Idowu

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), on Monday said the hopes and expectations of Nigerians on the Ekiti gubernatorial election which comes up in two week time will not be dashed.

The News Agency  reports that the commission’s top officials, on a visit to the state, gave the assurance in Ado Ekiti, saying there would be no room for failure in the poll.

The INEC National Commissioner in charge of Ekiti, Osun and Oyo states, Mr. Solomon Soyebi and his counterpart in charge of Election Operations and Logistics, Mrs. Amina Zakari gave the declaration at a Pre-Election Preparation workshop organised for Electoral Officers, Assistant Electoral Officers and Head of Departments.

Soyebi said the workshop was to tidy up things as every polling unit must be opened by 7 a.m.

“There will be no room for excuses. Any Local Government where this happens, the Electoral Officer, (EO) will be held responsible.

“You must share responsibilities with your assistants to avoid one-man show.

“You must also watch your utterances so as to safeguard the integrity of the exercise,” he said.

Also speaking, Zakari debunked an allegation by Gov. Ayo Fayose that she had been hired by the governorship candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr. Kayode Fayemi, to rig the election in favour of the party.

She challenged the governor and the Peoples Democratic Party to back their allegations with evidence, saying it was not possible for an individual to rig an election.

“They should prove that beyond reasonable doubt. I doubt it if an individual can rig an election when there are over 20,000 personnel to conduct the election.

“They should back their allegation with fact and figures. We (INEC) have nothing to hide.

“I see no reason why INEC will want to go back to bad old days; we are moving forward as we remained focused to ensure a credible election that Nigeria will be proud of.”

Zakari said the workshop would review work done so far and to expose officials to new ideas, processes and approach to a successful conduct of the election.

“The workshop is to ensure proper preparations for the election. This is the practice over the years. It is to ensure there is no gap between policies and implementation

“It is to aid direct interaction with departments that initiate policies and to collect ideas that will help in reshaping policies and procedure

“I have no doubt that this will be well-organised and it will be adjudged as the most successful election ever conducted,” she said.

Earlier, the Resident Electoral Commissioner in Ekiti, Prof. Abdul-Ganiyu Raji, said the workshop was to ensure information flow between policy formulators and those that implement it, towards a successful conduct of the election.

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