Why Elections Will Not Hold In 240 Polling Units – INEC
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said that election will not hold in 240 polling units across the country, barely 12 days to the general election,
The nation’s electoral body noted that the 240 polling units, which are without registered voters, cut across 28 States of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
The chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, who disclosed this at a meeting with Political Parties in Abuja on Monday, explained that no new registrant chose the polling units and no voter indicated interest to transfer their registration to them during the last Continuous Voter Registration (CVR), mainly for security reasons.
According to him, “There are 240 polling units without registered voters spread across 28 States and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
“They range from one polling unit to 12 polling units in each State and the FCT, except Taraba and Imo States with 34 and 38 polling units respectively.
“No new registrants chose the polling units and no voters indicated interest to transfer to them during the last Continuous Voter Registration (CVR), mainly for security reasons. This means that no elections will hold in these polling units.”
He recalled that in 2021, with the support of parties and other critical stakeholders, the Commission successfully expanded voter access to polling units 25 years after the last delimitation exercise in 1996.
Buying PVCs Won’t Help Any Politician – INEC
Consequently, he said the number of polling units increased from 119,973 to the current figure of 176,846.
“At previous meetings, we also briefed you on our efforts to redistribute voters to the polling units to avoid the congestion that made voting cumbersome in many of them nationwide.
“This requires the redistribution of voters to new polling units in proximate locations. Where they are separated by distance, this must be done after consultation with the voters. This has been done by our State offices nationwide,” he said.
He said in its avowed commitment to transparency, the Commission was making available to Nigerians a comprehensive list of the polling units by name, code number, and their locations by State, Local Government and Registration Area.
With this development, he said the number of polling units where elections will hold nationwide on 25th February 2023 and 11th March 2023 is now 176,606.
“Hard copies of the list are included in your folders for this meeting. Above all, Nigerians deserve the right to know the locations of these polling units. Accordingly, the soft copy of the list has been uploaded to our website and social media platforms for public information and guidance.
“Closely related to the distribution of voters is the identification of polling units. From the feedback we received from our officials and accredited observers following the recent nationwide mock accreditation using the BVAS, it is clear that some voters could not easily identify their polling units.
“This should not happen on election day. Consequently, the Commission is advising voters to confirm the locations of their polling units through a dedicated portal on our website. In addition, all voters who have been assigned to new polling units will receive text messages from the Commission indicating their polling units.
“We have also compiled the register of such voters and our State offices will give it wide publicity, especially for those who may not have provided their telephone numbers during voter registration or those whose numbers may have changed,” he added.
Speaking further, he said voters can locate and confirm their polling units before election day by sending a regular text or WhatsApp message to a dedicated telephone number.
He said details of the simple procedure will be uploaded to INEC social media platforms shortly.
“As you are already aware, we have less than two weeks to the 2023 General Election. The Commission is finalising the issuance of 1,642,386 identification tags for the Polling and Collation Agents nominated by the 18 political parties made up of 1,574,301 Polling Agents and 68,085 Collation Agents.
“I urge the Chairmen and leaders of political parties to ensure that only agents accredited by the Commission and wearing the correct identification tags appear at polling units and collation centres during elections.
“A situation where two or more agents claim to represent a political party, resulting in commotion at polling units or collation centres, is unacceptable. Only Identification tags issued by the Commission will be recognised on election day and violators are liable to arrest and prosecution for impersonation.
“Turning to the ongoing electioneering campaigns, the Commission is concerned about violent attacks on supporters of political parties across the board, resulting in the loss of life in some cases. Let me once again appeal to Chairman and leaders of political parties to continue to call your candidates and supporters to order,” he said.
On his part, IPAC national chairman, Engr. Yabagi Yusuf Sani, reiterated the continued commitment of IPAC to the long-standing cooperation and mutually beneficial relationship between the IPAC and INEC.
He also reaffirmed the confidence of IPAC in the leadership of INEC for its consistent demonstration of diligence, uncommon zeal, and patriotism in the pursuit of the agency’s statutory mandate.
He said at it has always been in the past, IPAC and INEC will be coming away from the meeting more prepared to face the onerous historical challenge of conducting credible, transparent, and acceptable elections in 2023.
“On the basis of our evaluation that INEC has been well on track, the leadership of IPAC additionally wishes to use this occasion to commend, the efforts of INEC in confronting the extraordinary environmental challenges occasioned by naira redesign and fuel scarcity through Mr. Chairman’s visit to the relevant agencies
“Usually, Siamese twins needed to be in constant agreement to enable them to live together harmoniously. Also, it is said that a case that is discussed does not usually cause trouble.
“It is on this philosophical note that I want to thank INEC and her Commissioners for constantly calling us to rub minds together because of the Nigerian political project.
“By what we hear and read in the news, your mock accreditation exercise was a success. That is very encouraging. As we know, a mock examination cannot be taken to be the real examination whose coverage is wider and complex.
“So far, the BVAS that were used were reported to have performed perfectly. We are encouraged by this and also wish to appreciate INEC while expecting them to keep the flag of perfection flying,” he stated.
Similarly, he said the Electoral Institute conducted a train-the-trainer workshop for polling agents/collation officers recently.
He said the move is commendable but the Parties are trying to meet the challenges of lean resources to cascade the training down to other critical levels.
“The 2023 general elections seemingly will be a watershed in the history of elections in Nigeria. Today, the tide has changed, because an unknown Party could pull a surprise to the greatest chagrin of all. From this point of view, it is necessary to advise INEC to keep its date with history which must not be wasted.
“INEC should create a golden niche for herself especially the Chairman who has become the child of history, Nigerians are watching, the international community is watching and the Parties are palpitating: I, therefore call on all Nigerians of good conscience to take credible results of the election the way it is.
“At worse. Parties should resort to the law court for adjudication Today it is an abhorrence and crudity if not savagery to see States Governors denying campaign venues to political parties other than their own. This is crude, primitive, and uncivilized.”
He also admonished party leaders that have observed that the elections are conducted free, fair, and credible, the result should be accepted for the love of our country.
“Mr. Chairman, under no circumstances should this election be postponed! Having noted this, I wish to congratulate all the Parties for patting up the healthy campaigns while thanking INEC with great expectations to deliver a credible election,” he added
‘it’s time to decide’- LP presidential candidate, Peter Obi
Presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, has told Nigerians that it is time to make up their minds on whom to cast their votes for.
Obi, in tweets on Monday morning, said those sitting on the fence need to decide now who will lead them and not waste the opportunity.
Adding that the “elders” have failed us, the LP candidate said, “Those of us born after independence must now be given the opportunity to reshape the destiny of this nation.
“We are down the stretch with 12 days to go. I have a message for Nigerians, especially those that are sitting on the fence; It is DECISION TIME.Shot During
“Every nation has significant moments in their history –when a situation arises, which requires that nation to take specific steps that would mark her turning point. Nigeria is at that historical junction
“How we have done as a nation is no longer in debate. We have done poorly due to bad leadership. We must now seize this moment. We must save Nigeria now or never.
“Twelve days from now we will be called upon to make very hard choices. It won’t be about tribe or religion; it won’t be about traditional sentiments of my turn. It will be about national Interest.”
Tinubu will emerge President with our support – North West APC chair, Lukman
The National Vice Chairman (North-West) of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Salihu Moh. Lukman, has expressed confidence that the party’s presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, will win this year’s election.
According to him, the support shown by people during the APC presidential campaign rally in the North-West indicated the party’s success in the region and victory in the coming elections.
Lukman pointed out that the North West has always been the determining factor for presidential candidates to win elections in the country.
A statement issued on Sunday by Lukman explained that Kebbi State APC Presidential Rally on Saturday, February 11, 2023, concluded the phase of the APC presidential campaign rallies in all the seven states of the North-West.
He explained, “We want to thank all our people and re-affirm the commitment of our party, our leaders and all our candidates to continue to provide honest, sincere and responsive leadership. In particular, we want to thank and congratulate all our party leadership at levels in the North-West Zone for the hard work and maintaining a united front throughout this phase of the campaign. We want to also commend and appreciate all our party members and supporters for coming out in mass to all campaign rallies.”
Why Epe indigenes should vote for Hon. Noheem Balogun
By: Balogun Ibrahim
The talent of the man who becomes the House of Representative, Epe Constituency is of the essence. We don’t need a passive representative but an energetic and assertive one. Noheem Balogun is not only supremely qualified but uniquely qualified to engage in the art of representation. The young man has a mind of his own. He has expressly stated that under his representative, as the House of Representative for Epe federal constituency, nobody will monopolize initiative and decision on major policy issues. Again, the structure of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is more cohesive, more uniform in experience, and more single-mindedly accustomed to thinking in terms of the betterment of the society. The party is unlike the APC, which is constantly resisting innovation and bureaucratically conservative.
I acknowledge Balogun’s remarkable qualities, his coherent views, his cool, hard to ruffle temperament and his near faultless campaign organization. He has promised to create new jobs and lay a new foundation for growth and development of the constituency. He has promised to bring lights, jobs and good roads, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. He has also promised to transform our schools to meet the demands of a new age. I have faith in him that he will perform as promised. Balogun is passionate about Epe division and that means a lot. It will be appreciated everyone to vote for this great philanthropist. The Igbo and Hausa communities in the division, have also urged Igbos and Hausas to vote for PDP. “Conventional wisdom dictates that Igbo and Hausa should do the bidding of their hosts who have an PDP leader Abubakar Atiku, as presidential candidate, who must not be embarrassed. Besides, it is in Igbo and Hausa core and vital interest to massively vote for PDP House of Representative candidate, Balogun”
Indeed, Noheem Balogun was born in Epe to the family of Mr. Musiliu and Madam Taibat Balogun (both late), but of Oke-posu and Oke-balogun areas of Epe respectively. After his primary education, he proceeded to Epe Grammar School, Epe where he obtained his West African School Certificate (WASC) in 1981. He holds a Bachelor of Science (Cum Laude) degree in Criminal Justice from Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, USA.
Balogun also possesses a Master of Science degree in Computer Cyber Security from American Military University, Charles Town, West Virginia, USA. He is a Ph.D in view in Computer Information Security at Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, USA. He is also a certified Microsoft system Engineer and a Siebel Oracle developer. His career trajectory made him through various executive capacities as Communication Officer at Elder Dempster Co, Nigeria Limited; senior Cyber Security consultant at AT&T, USA, Senior Software Developer at IBM Corporation, USA. In fact, he held these responsibilities before venturing into private business. He is currently, President/CEO, Abifoley Co. Nigeria, Limited, Abbey ventures Limited and Abifoley systems, Atlanta Georgia, USA.
Balogun has the capacity and what is even take to lad us, we must not forget that APC has caused us so much pain and havoc. We have nothing to show for voting for them over the years. We need a division, Epe federal constituency that works because we live and work here. A lot developmental ongoing in the Epe division courtesy “Noheem Balogun” with his personal resources and promising that they are going to see more if elected into the House of Representative. He was nicknamed ‘Imole Dee’ after provision of light to the division after sixteen years of darkness in the division.
The Media Adviser to Hon. Noheem Balogun, Yomi Agabje disclosed that the man has helped his constituents in many ways, especially through provision of good jobs to his followers and others, without or irrespective of political affiliation and those be given jobs were doing wonderfully well in their respective place of works and “they are all dynamic and outstanding performers in their own right. Each is different from the other and each and they are excels in its own unique way. This means that Balogun is not orchestrating them into some limited uniformity but stands out of the way for them to lead as they believe. No major politician in Epe division has a track record as good as Balogun’s when it comes to supporting able people for office and securing jobs for the masses. Nowhere in APC members does this in Epe division, including present House of Representative, Mr. Wale Raji.
Sorry, for that little bit digression, Noheem Balogun political journey began with his office as a Youth leader in the defunct National Party of Nigeria (NPN), he held the same capacity in National Advance Party (NAP) founded by the late political icon, Dr. Tunji Braithwaite. He was an active member of Social Democratic Party (SDP) during the failed democratic dispensation of the early 90s, currently, he is a staunch member of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on whose platform he is seeking position of House of Representative at the National Assembly, lower chamber, to represent Epe federal constituency in the 2023 general elections.
Noheem Balogun, is a consummate philanthropist, which he has demonstrate to be a good leader through provision of social amenities for the people of Epe division that even surpassed the current occupier of the position he is seeking, he has provided over 100 solar streetlights to communities in the division, construction of drainages and culverts to the needed communities and drilling of drinkable boreholes for the communities with his personal resources and without bias and political party, even those commitment was born out of passions for the love he has for his communities and his constituency, Epe division, till date he still continue the good job.
He has promised to revitalize the fortune of cottage industries in Epe division, because all these industries had been moribund, including Plywood Industry, the Oodua industrial company and others, also the fisheries parastatal had been collapsed but promising to rejig them if elected into power, also in his manifesto, he vowed to provide portable water for all, rural electrification and sustainable power supply, including better life for women and rural ones. He also promised access to affordable housing and improved healthcare facilities and better standard of living of his constituency.
The scholarship and bursary award for the students that had been jettisoned for the years, especially for the indigent students, Noheem Balogun had hinted that he is going to revisit the issue, through provision of scholarship to brilliant and indigent students at all educational levels (applicable to both indigenes and residents of Epe division), availability of bursary award to all Epe indigenes in tertiary institutions and youth empowerment through creative, innovative method and acquisition skills, also economic prosperity through entrepreneurial development and wealth creation in order to increase job and business opportunities for the people.
Also, his fostering unity in diversity through inclusion, equity and justice in his manifesto will promote unity among the youths that usually engaging in cultism activities, and his social support for the vulnerable will reduce and abate advanced beggars in the communities and among the youths and olds engaging in begging activity, he also promised improved mother and child medicare, which our mothers,sin grandmother and great grandmother will have access to medical attention, and provide drugs and prescription of drugs to them all. Also, access to startup loans and various credit facilities for traders and fishers in the division, as we are all known as custodian of fishes (Epe e’leja).
To this ends, Epe indigenes need to be very cautious, especially the electorates to look at the best candidates among those contesting for the position of authority in their respective position seeking for, so as not to vote for bad contestants, which is going to steer their post of authority for the next four years. We should look at their antecedents, what they have for us in their manifestos, what are they done for us, those in saddle right now? What have we gained from them, let’s juxtapose those things before going out en masse to vote for them.
They say, once bitten, twice shy, don’t let them becloud our reasoning with their sugarcoated campaign promises, whenever they are campaigning, they will be promising heaven on the earth, once they assumed that position of authority, nobody there near them with their security apparatus, so let’s vote wise, and vote for a pragmatic change, energetic and competent person for the House of Representative, Epe federal constituency in person of Hon. Noheem Balogun, which has the capacity and will to take Epe indigenes to the promise land.
Ibrahim, a journalist and a media consultant, writes in from No, 17, Ajanasi Street, Oke-Posu, off Ajagannabe road, Epe, Lagos State, Nigeria
Can be reached via:- balogunibrahim1777@
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