Osun by-election: We’re ready –INEC

Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies have expressed their readiness for the July 8, 2017

Osun West senatorial district by-election.

Delta State INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Baritor Kpagih, who was deployed to the state for the election, disclosed this in Osogbo, yesterday, during a stakeholders’ meeting, including INEC officials, party representatives, security agencies and the media.

The by-election is being conducted to replace late Senator Isiaka Adeleke, who died in April.

The Delta REC assured the public of free, fair and credible election, stressing that all the security agencies and INEC officials would collaborate to achieve success in the exercise.

He disclosed that while 11 political parties would participate in the election, only those with permanent voters’ card, verified by Card Readers, would be allowed to vote.

He further disclosed that voting and accreditation would take place simultaneously to ensure prompt completion of the exercise and announcement of the winner.

According to him, the exercise would begin by 8:00am and close by 2:00pm.

He added that any voter still on queue at closing hours would be allowed to vote.

Kpagih said INEC officials, party agents and security personnel would move election materials, already at the state branch of the Central Bank of Nigeria, to the 10 local government areas on Thursday morning, to avoid manipulation allegations.

He also disclosed that some INEC officials havebeen deployed from different parts of the state to serve as observers.

The INEC REC assured parties of commission’s integrity and poise to conduct the election without fear or favour, saying there would be no room for rigging.

He urged party leaders, representatives, agents, security agents, religious leaders, other stakeholders and the people to cooperate with a view to ensuring a credible and peaceful exercise.

Commissioner of Police (CP), Olafimihan Adeoye, also expressed his men’s readiness for the election.

He disclosed that officers and men of the Force havebeen deployed to ensure adequate security during the exercise.

Adeoye warned party leaders, politicians and the contestants to shun the idea of using thugs to cause confusing, insisting that anybody that took laws into his hand and embark on any form of violence “would be dealt with squarely within the ambit of the law.”

He announced restriction of movement between 6:00am and 6:00pm on election day.

“Those who have no business in the electoral processes should steer clear of the ballot area,” the CP said.

Director of NYSC, Emmanuel Attah, urged politicians not to harass or intimidate corps members deployed to serve as INEC ad hoc staff while performing their duties during the election.

He, however, assured that there are no fake corps members in the state, adding that whoever attempted to impersonate corps members would be detected easily and made to face the law.

Comptroller of Immigration, Idowu Adebowale, also warned foreigners not to participate in the election, noting that they lacked the franchise to do so.

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