PHOTOS: Prominent Nigerians Take To The Polls

 

 

As the Governorship and State Assembly elections gradually draw to a conclusion, some prominent Nigerians were not left out in the exercise.

They took to their respective polling units to cast their votes for candidates of their choice.

READ ALSO: We’ve Gotten The Victory, Says Wike

Already, voting has ended in most polling units and collation has commenced.

Below are photos;

 

INEC Declares Kogi Governorship Election Inconclusive

Kogi governorship election The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has declared the Kogi State governorship election inconclusive.

Declaring the results of the election, the Returning Officer, Professor Emmanuel Kucha, said the electoral body’s decision was reached after collation of results showed a number of cancelled votes that was higher than the margin between the leading candidate and the runner-up.

After election results from the 21 local government areas were collated on Sunday, the All Progressives Congress’ candidate, Abubakar Audu, was leading while the incumbent Governor, Captain Idris Wada of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) trailed by a margin less than the number of cancelled votes.

The candidate of the All Progressives Congress had 240,867 votes while that of the PDP got 199,514 votes.

Kogi-State-2015-Governorship-Election-results
Click image to view detailed election results

The commission said 49,953 votes were canceled, which was higher than the margin between the leading candidate and the runner-up.

No date was fixed by INEC for a supplementary election in Kogi State.

The Kogi governorship election is the first election that the new leadership of the INEC is conducting.

It is also the first election under the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari of the APC, after the ruling party won the March 28 Presidential election, taking power from the Peoples Democratic Party that had ruled the Nigeria for 16 years.

Earlier, observers monitoring the governorship election in Kogi State called on political parties to ensure their supporters and members remain calm as collation of election results continue in Kogi State.

A human rights lawyer, Onyeisi Chiemeka, also told Channels Television that the polls appeared to have been free and fair although there were some challenges recorded by INEC especially with logistics.

 

John Kerry To Lead U.S. Delegation To Buhari’s Inauguration

John KerryThe U.S. Secretary of State, John Kerry, will lead a delegation to the inauguration of Nigeria’s President-elect, General Muhammadu Buhari.

On its Twitter handle, the U.S. Department of State announced the decision on Monday.

Preparations have started for the inauguration that will hold on May 29.

General Buhari defeated the incumbent President, Goodluck Jonathan, in the March 28 presidential election with over two million votes, the first time an incumbent president would be defeated.

Police Satisfied With Performance During 2015 Elections

policeThe Nigeria Police on Monday gave itself a pass mark on its performance during the just concluded governorship and state houses of assembly elections, maintaining that the security arrangements “met its expectations”.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Emmanuel Ojukwu, said even though there were pockets of violence across the country, it did not have any effect on the police security arrangements

Mr Ojukwu told Channels Television that arrests have been made in Rivers State and other parts of the country where there was violence.

He further noted that prosecution has commenced in some cases, but refused to speak on the number of deaths recorded during the polls.

The police commended Nigerians for their conduct and information provided during the polls, but like Oliver twist, they asked for more cooperation with security agencies beyond the polls.

We Are Investigating Over 124 Cases Of Electoral Violence – IGP

IGPOver 124 cases of electoral violence are currently being investigated by the men of the Nigeria Police Force.

Addressing the Commissioners of Police across the 36 states of the federation and the FCT, ahead of the governorship elections slated for this weekend, the Inspector General of Police, Mr Suleiman Abba said the perpetrators of some of the cases of electoral violence have been charged to court.

The police boss also said that arrests have also been made on the violence that occurred before and during the presidential elections in Rivers State.

The candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), General Muhammadu Buhari, was declared winner of Nigeria’s presidential election, defeating the incumbent, President Goodluck Jonathan.

General Buhari of polled a total of 15,424,921 votes to defeat all other candidates, with Dr Goodluck Jonathan of the PDP polling a total of 12,853,162 votes to place second.

Obama Commends Buhari, Jonathan

obamaThe U.S. President, Barack Obama, on Wednesday commended President-elect Muhammadu Buhari, and current President, Goodluck Jonathan, following the outcome of the presidential election.

In a statement, the U.S. President, who praised Nigeria’s commitment to democracy said: “I urge President-elect Buhari and President Jonathan to repeat their calls to their supporters to continue to respect the election outcomes, focus on unifying the country, and together lead Nigeria through a peaceful transition.”

Ahead of the general elections, President Barack Obama, had sent a special message to Nigerians, urging a credible and peaceful polls.

In the message sent directly to Nigerians, President Obama reminded the nation about its struggle for independence from colonialism, the struggle against military dictatorship and the need to turn the country’s diversity into a source of strength.

Positive reactions have continued to trail Nigeria’s conduct of its 2015 general elections with the South African President, Jacob Zuma, also commending Nigeria’s successful and peaceful conduct of the presidential election.

The UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon, says the way the presidential election in Nigeria was conducted is “a testament” to Nigeria’s “democratic spirit”.

Mr Ban Ki-Moon also commended President Jonathan for “his statesmanship in upholding the democratic process”.

General Muhammadu Buhari was declared the winner of the Presidential election in the early hours of Wednesday and has received his Certificate of Return from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

He defeated Nigeria’s incumbent President, Dr Goodluck Jonathan, by over 2 million votes, in a keenly contested election which held on Saturday, March 28, 2015.

This is the first time an opposition party is winning the presidential election in Nigeria.

Before handing over the certificate to General Buhari, the Chairman of INEC, Professor Attahiru Jega, pledged that the commission would continue to do its best, under all circumstances, to ensure free, fair and credible elections.

INEC To Investigate Cause Of Glitches In Election

JegaThe Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says it has started investigation into the cause of the glitches that forced the electoral body to adjust its guidelines to accommodate manual accreditation of voters.

After card readers at different polling units malfunctioned on Saturday, the INEC gave the order for manual accreditation of voters with the voters register to enable everyone participate in the election.

The chairman of the commission, Professor Attahiru Jega, told reporters in Abuja on Sunday that ‘the commission hopes to address the lapses witnessed in the election to ensure it would not recur on April 11.

Lapses More Than Anticipated

He said that the lapses witnessed in the election were more than what the commission had anticipated.

“We’ll ensure they don’t occur in April,” Jega said.

The chairman of INEC told reporters that the commission had started investigations into what accounted for the difficulties with the card readers.

He also said that the commission would investigate reports of underage voting from Taraba, stressing that INEC had instructed that the officials involved should be identified.

“Underage voting is against the law. We are investigating reports and will take measures once this is established.”

Rivers Election

The Chairman of the INEC told the reporters that the commission had received a letter from the All Progressives Congress, calling for the cancellation of elections in Rivers State.

“We are thoroughly investigating this and after the investigation, we will brief the political parties on our findings.

“If we find out that our staff are involved in any illegal acts, they will be investigated and penalised according to the law,” Professor Jega said.

He further said that the commission was pleased that the elections went on smoothly across the country including the north-east where Internally Displaced Persons in Adamawa Borno and Yobe voted.

“We hope good conduct will continue to prevail throughout the election period as well.

The commission commended Nigerians for the resilience and understanding exhibited in the face of these difficulties.

“According to the reports from our state offices, collation of results has commenced and it is going well,” Professor Jega said.

He insisted that results of the election should be expected 48 hours after the elections have been concluded.

APC Supporters Protest In Rivers State

Rivers State ProtestSome supporters of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State in southern Nigeria  are protesting against the conduct of Saturday’s election in the state, declaring their dissatisfaction with the process.

Protesters in their thousands walked the streets in the State capital, Port Harcourt, on Sunday, causing heavy traffic.

They broke through the security barricade and walked towards the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission.

No election was held in Rivers State, they said, demanding that the exercise should be cancelled and rescheduled.

The APC supporters said the rules of the election were broken and the election reflected nothing that suggests true democracy.

Eyewitness told Channels Television that the situation in the state was ‘very tense’.

Channels Television correspondent, Emmanuel Ereyi quoted the leader of the group as saying that they had gathered over 50,000 supporters of the APC for the protest.

According to Ereyi, the protest has been peaceful.

“They were harmless. They were not carrying any form of weapon. No bottles, no guns no machetes. Securities forces allowed them to protest because they were harmless,” he said.

At the gate of the INEC office, the protesters led by the governorship candidates of the APC, Dakuku Peterside, demanded access into the premises of the INEC office, but security agents on ground stopped the group from entering the premises.

Lapses In Election More Than We Anticipated – Jega

Professor Attahiru Jega on electionThe Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Nigeria says it hopes to address the lapses witnessed in Saturday’s election to ensure it will not recur on April 11.

The chairman of the commission, Professor Attahiru Jega, told reporters in Abuja on Sunday that the lapses witnessed in the election were more than what the commission had anticipated.

“We’ll ensure they don’t occur in April,” Jega said.

The chairman of the INEC told reporters that the commission had started investigations into what accounted for the difficulties with the Card Readers.

He also said that the commission would investigate reports of underage voting from Taraba, stressing that the INEC had instructed that the officials involved should be identified.

“Underage voting is against the law. We are investigating reports and will take measures once this is established.”

The Chairman of the INEC told the reporters that the commission had received a letter from the All Progressives Congress, calling for the cancellation of elections in Rivers State.

“We are thoroughly investigating this and after the investigation, we will brief the political parties of our findings.

“If we find out that our staff are involved in any illegal acts, they will be investigated and penalised according to the law,” Professor Jega said.

After card readers failed to read finger prints in some polling units, the commission issued supplementary guidelines to enable officials perform manual accreditation in Osun, Kebbi, Ekiti, Adamawa, Borno, Jigawa, Anambra, Akwa Ibom and Ebonyi.

Although collation of results are still ongoing in different states, there have been reports of results on social media, a development the INEC chairmen told the reporters to disregard.

Professor Jega emphasised that “only the INEC is empowered by law to announce results and it is an offence for anyone to pre-empt the commission in this regard”.

He further said that the commission was was pleased that the elections went on smoothly across the country including the north-east where Internally Displaced Persons in Adamawa Borno and Yobe voted.

“We hope good conduct will continue to prevail throughout the election period as well.

The commission commended Nigerians for the resilience and understanding exhibited in the face of these difficulties.

“According to the reports from our state offices, collation of results has commenced and it is going well,” Professor Jega said.

He said that results of the election should be expected 48 hours after the elections have been concluded.

Elderly Persons Commit To Nigeria’s Democratic Process

Elderly man comes out to vote
Man supported by nurses coming to exercise his rights

Some elderly persons have showed unwavering commitment to the tenets of democracy and its growth in Nigeria, as they came out on Saturday to vote against all odds.

Images of two elderly persons went viral, after they were captured making all efforts necessary to ensure they cast their votes in the Presidential and National Assembly elections.

Though old, they saw the need to come out to cast their votes at a period that the Electoral Commission introduced the card reader electronic machine for the accreditation of voters.

Elderly woman comes out to vote
Elderly woman comes out to vote

In Duara, Katsina State, the home town of the presidential candidate of the All progressives Congress, General Muhammadu Buhari, an elderly woman approached the electoral body’s ad-hoc staff at the polling unit to cast her vote, showing her commitment to Nigeria’s democratic process and an expression of her believe that a democratically elected government was worth making such commitment for.

Helped to the polling unit, she showed determination to be a part of the process.

In another part of Nigeria, a man was also captured being supported by nurses and some other persons to ensure that he took part in the election.

It is believed that the man must have requested that he should be taken to the polling unit to cast his vote despite his condition.

 

#Nigeria2015: Vote With Your Head, Not Your Heart – Aliyu

Umar AliyuSecurity Consultant, Captain Umar Aliyu (Rtd) on Friday called on Nigerians to vote logically and not emotionally as doing otherwise will put them at risk of falling for political propaganda.

Captain Aliyu who was a guest on Channels Television’s special 2015 election programme, Nigeria 2015, said “Go and vote with your head, not with your heart”, he warned, adding that “If you vote with your heart, you will be vulnerable to those things the politicians harp on – sentiments, emotion and what have you”.

“If you vote with your head, you’re actually going to be logical, cautious and (let me say) security conscious”.

According to him “people should understand that whichever way, whatever way, the elections are going to take a position – one of two possible outcomes and I think what parties should do is to begin to prepare their followers for the other outcome.”

Captain Aliyu also noted that most politicians across different political parties were particular about a win-win outcome, which was not possible.

“Parties would do well to begin to prepare followers for the ‘just in case it goes the other way’”.

The consultant also gave security tips to the electorate to help them stay safe while participating in the elections.

Pre-election, Aliyu advised people “to begin to pay a little more attention to their itinerary. People should begin to pay more attention to their utterances.

“People should also begin to look at trying as much as possible to put one or two things out of the way. Like posters, stickers on your vehicles. Don’t go about wearing a T shirt that is pro or anti any group, before or during the elections.

Aliyu stressed that only one candidate would emerge winner at the forthcoming Presidential election and the results may not be received well.

He also warned that although the security agencies have been deployed, citizens must take some steps to protect themselves.

Chad, Niger Troops Retake Gasheger From Boko Haram

Soldiers relciam Goniri in Yobe StateTroops from Chad and Niger on Thursday pursued Boko Haram fighters across a northern Nigeria border area, retaking Gasheger from the terrorist group.

Some of the terrorist that escaped from the town flee into Niger, two senior Niger military officers said.

Troops from Chad, Cameroon and Niger are participating in a joint offensive along with Nigeria aimed at ending the Islamist group’s six-year insurgency in north-east Nigeria.

The insurgency had spilled across Nigeria’s borders to threaten regional stability.

“Took Back Gasheger”

A column of troops left the Nigerian town of Damasak, which was retaken from the militants earlier this month, in the morning to capture the Boko Haram-occupied village of Gasheger, the sources said.

According to Reuters, a witness across the border in the nearby Nigerien town of Diffa, which has served as a staging area for the operations, heard explosions around midday as the sources said the coalition troops met resistance from the Islamists.

“We took back Gasheger,” one of the officers told Reuters.

During the clashes, Boko Haram fighters fired a mortar that landed in the village of Kalgueri, killing one woman, the sources said.

After being driven from Gasheger, some Boko Haram fighters fled across the Komadougou River into the town of Guesseri in Niger where soldiers from Niger’s elite American-trained anti-terrorist unit pursued them.

“More than 100 fighters were in Gasheger. They’re now in an area with a lot of trees,” the second source said.

The regional offensive launched this year comes as Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country and biggest economy, prepares to hold elections on Saturday. Nigeria’s elections commission postponed the polls to allow the renewed counter-terrorism operation to go forward and make room for Nigerians in the region to participate in the exercise.

The offensive has succeeded in driving Boko Haram from Yobe and Adamawa State.