By Adekola Afolabi
Sensitive materials needed for the conduct of Saturday’s presidential and National Assembly elections were yesterday dispatched to all local governments in Ondo State by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.
The materials were dispatched to different local government areas in the state from the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Akure branch after being sorted out.
Investigations by The Hope revealed that the sensitive materials for Ondo Central Senatorial District which were not delivered to the state as at the time the elections were postponed had arrived the state and have since been distributed for smooth conduct of the elections.
Supervising the sorting and distribution of the materials were the Ondo State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Dr. Rufus Akeju, INEC officials, representatives of various political parties and the security agents.
At the various local government areas, the materials would be sorted out and dispatched according to registration centres and polling units. All these would be done on election day.
A visit by The Hope to the CBN showed presence of armed security personnel in and around the venue of the distribution.
Similar security arrangement was seen at the INEC headquarters in Akure, as fierce looking security personnel including the Armoured Personnel Carrier, APC, Anti-Bomb and other security vehicles were stationed both at the frontage and around the INEC office.
The INEC said it was ready and fully prepared for the Saturday’s Presidential and National Assembly elections earlier slated to hold last Saturday February 16.
Speaking on the distribution, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Chief Collation Agent in Ondo state, Chief Sola Ebiseni, expressed satisfaction, saying there was no cause for alarm.
He said the distribution of elections materials showed that the electoral umpire was ready for the Saturday’s exercise.
Also, the state chairman of the Peoples Party of Nigeria, PPN, Alhaji Aforolagba Hassan said the distribution was in good order.
The chairman of The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof Mahmood Yakubu had, in the early hours of last Saturday, February 16, announced the postponement of the general elections by one week due to some identified challenges.
The INEC consequently rescheduled the Presidential and National Assembly Elections from Saturday 16 to Saturday 23, 2019. It also shifted the Governorship, State Houses of Assembly and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Area Council Elections to Saturday, March 9, 2019.
According to the INEC, the development would afford the Commission opportunity to address identified challenges in order to maintain the quality of our elections.
“This was a difficult decision for the Commission to take, but necessary for the successful delivery of the elections and the consolidation of our democracy”, INEC boss emphasised.
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