Jega Confident Logistic Challenges Will Be Cut Off During Polls

jegaThe Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Attahiru Jega, has expressed confidence that the decentralisation of distribution of election materials for the 2015 elections would cut off logistic challenges at the forthcoming polls.

Professor Jega said this at a meeting with the former President of Liberia and head of the AU delegation, Professor Amos Sawyer.

Professor Jega told the African Union (AU) election observers in Abuja that this method was not used during the 2011 general elections, hence the late commencement of accreditation and voting at polling units across the country.

The issue of logistics had always posed a major challenge at the polls.

Professor Jega admitted that there were challenges in the methodology of distribution which spiraled into widespread agitations from the electorate.

He added that the electoral body was still growing and would plug all loop holes in future elections.

Jega also urged election officials to ensure that counting of ballot papers after the voting process is done transparently in the presence of local and international observers. He has also warned security personnel against any form of intimidation.

Professor Jega received a letter from the Chairperson of the AU Commission, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, who promised full support to the nation at this time.

INEC has almost concluded the distribution process nationwide less than 48hours to the polls.

Southerners Leave Kaduna Ahead of Election

kaduna Nigerians particularly southerners living in Kaduna State and other parts of the north are migrating to their villages in anticipation of post election violence.

This is despite the pleas by Igbo leaders and Ohanaeze Ndigbo to Igbos in other parts of the country, especially the North, to vote where they live.

Channels Television visited some motor parks in the state capital, reported that many families prefer to travel to their home towns ahead of the election, in anticipation of election violence.

Some of those interviewed, gave reasons for their traveling to fear of an outbreak of election violence, as witnessed in 2011, while others claimed they are traveling ahead of the Easter Celebration.

Some of the passengers who were seen at the motor park said, they would stay until after the elections before returning to the North, adding that they abandoned their businesses for fear of crisis.

Commuters are traveling along with mattresses and other household items, signalling that they may likely stay for quite some time before returning to their bases.

In 2011, many people in the state were killed including non indigenes during the post election violence in Northern Nigeria.

While assuring residents of adequate security during the general elections, the Kaduna state commissioner of Police, Umar Shehu, called on people not to panic. The Commissioner said that the fear is unfounded, noting that such movement will only be necessary if they were going home to cast their votes in the elections.

Mr. Shehu, also warned of a restriction order starting from Thursday evening, adding that all exit and entry points into the state will be blocked by security agencies ahead of the election.

The Kaduna state chapter of the All Progressive Congress (APC) has however faulted the Police commissioner’s restriction of movement order, saying that it is illegal and unconstitutional to bar people from moving around freely more than 48 hours to the election.

Meanwhile, the Kaduna state office of the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) has received all non-sensitive and sensitive materials in preparation for the election. The materials were brought to the state amidst tight security.

The state Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Mr Husseni Mahuta who briefed journalists in his office, said adequate arrangement has been put in place to ensure a hitch free election, while it is still distributing Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) that are already in its custody.