2023 polls: INEC again sends message to security agencies

INEC chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu

INEC chairman Prof. Mahmood Yakubu

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has again called on security agencies to beef up security in all its facilities in the state as elections are fast approaching.

According to the INEC timetable, the presidential and National Assembly elections in Nigeria will hold on Saturday 25 Feb.  2023, while governorship and State Assembly elections are billed to hold on Saturday, March 11.

The INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in Enugu State, Dr Chukwuemeka Chukwu, made the appeal on Wednesday during the Interagency Consultation Committee on Election Security (ICCES) meeting held in Enugu.

Chukwu said that with the resounding success of the mock accreditation done on the functionality of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) on Saturday, Feb. 4, in the state, “the commission is ready for the general election”.

The REC said the commission would commence distribution and deployment of non-sensitive materials for the general elections to 17 local government areas in Enugu State.

According to him, the commission will go ahead to implement other schedules within the timelines of the elections.

“The arrangement for an actual distribution or deployment of non-sensitive materials to 17 local government areas and INEC Registration Area Centres (RAC) will commence after the ICCES meeting.

“On this, INEC is appealing to security agencies to beef up security in these INEC facilities as we brace up for free, fair and credible elections,” he said.

Chukwu also revealed that the woman involved in the alleged viral video spotted extorting N1,000 for the issuance of Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) had been arrested, investigated and charged to court.

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“Since it is a court matter now, we will seize to comment on it but allow the case to run its natural course,” he said.

The REC noted as part of the preparations for the general elections, the commission carried out an intensive training of corps members on election matters on Tuesday at the state’s National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) camp in Awgu.

“We have concluded a train-the-trainers course for security agencies, done a refresher train-the-trainer for our staff on the BVAS as well as training of supervisors that will further step the training down to council areas and RAC centres,” he said.

Speaking, Mr Ahmed Ammani, the Commissioner of Police and Co-Chairman of ICCES also confirmed the arrest, investigation and current prosecution of the woman allegedly extorting residents of Emene before issuing out their PVCs to them.

Ammani assured INEC and the REC that latest by Friday, more deployment would be made to INEC offices and facilities within the state.

“We are clearly ready for the general elections and we are crossing the “T”s and dotting the “I”s currently on our deployment and other covert security strategies.

“The various security agencies for the elections have continued to do training for the elections both as individual security agencies and collectively on a joint basis,” he said.

The ICCES meeting was attended by heads of the military, security agencies and both Federal and state fire services.


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