Director Of Programme, YIAGA Africa Cynthia Mbamalu says the governorship and state Assembly elections taking place nationwide on Saturday March 18, 2023 is going to be an interesting one to look forward to as it is going to be very competitive in most states.
Speaking on ThisMorning with Yori Folarin, she said a lot of preparation needs to be done everything put in place to ensure peaceful conduct of the polls.
Mbamalu noted that from the Yiaga Africa pre-election statement released Wednesday, reports had been received from 26 states that INEC had started the deployments of materials from the central bank, in the state’s capital to the local government areas and materials are arriving in some local government areas.
“It is good to see that INEC is doing what it can to move materials and Personnel early.”
Mbamalu said currently, measures are being put in place to forestall a recurrence of late commencement of polls in wards and polling units as characterised in the presidential election
“If you remember, that the elections of 25th February 23 had recorded late commencement of polls.
“Yiaga Africa watching the data indicated that as at 9 30 a.m only 44 percent of polling units nationwide had commenced voting and accreditation on that presidential election which was like one hour post commencement time, we therefore saw polling going into late into the evening and in some places, counting was late into the night or early hours of Sunday morning.
“We need INEC to ensure that for these elections, early deployment is achieved, one of the things we learned from the last elections were some Transporters refused to move on elections morning because they were not adequately paid.
“It’s important that INEC, the residents Commissioners at the state level, the Electoral officers and the local government levels who are responsible for engaging this Transporters should engage with them and ensure that the materials and the Personnel are properly allocated to their vehicles and these Transporters are paid their money before they move, just so that we don’t have situations where transporters refuse to move when the materials and Personnel are around.
” Sufficient materials should also be available to be deployed to different polling units.
“INEC needs to tighten its planning and also provide contingency plans in case of eventuality.