By Nwafor Okafor
With one week to the November 6 governorship election in Anambra State, the Independent National Electoral Commission on Friday said 86 out of the 5,720 Polling Units in the state have no voters.
The commission, however, said it would not deploy personnel and materials to the polling units without voters. The chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, said this at a special consultative meeting with political parties in Abuja.
According to him, 894 representing 15.6 per cent of the polling units have between 1 and 49 voters.
Yakubu said, “Understandably, the voters have also been more circumspect in asking for a transfer to polling units. At the same time, the commission did not use its powers under Section 42 of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) to allot voters to the new polling units to minimise the disruptions that may occur from such a decision given the forthcoming governorship election.
“Consequently, out of the 5,720 polling units in Anambra State, 86; 1.5 per cent have no voters. For that reason, the commission will not be deploying personnel and materials to these polling units. Furthermore, 894 representing 15.6 per cent of the polling units have between 1 and 49 voters. The election will hold in these polling units.”
The INEC boss expressed the commission’s commitment to work with stakeholders to ensure that all polling units have voters allotted to them ahead of the 2023 general election.
Speaking on the commission’s preparation for the election, Yakubu said that all non-sensitive materials had been moved to the 21 Local Government Areas of the State.
He said the Central Bank of Nigeria was handling the delivery of sensitive materials to the State on schedule.
“Our State office in Awka is arranging for stakeholders to inspect the materials at the premises of the CBN in Awka. As is the case in all elections, the sensitive materials are moved under security escort to each Local Government Area from where they are distributed to the Registration Areas or Wards and finally to Polling Units on Election Day”, he added.
The INEC chairman urged political parties to present their agents to be on the ground for the inspection of the materials at the CBN.