Edo Residents Call On INEC To Extend Voters Registration Exercise

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has been urged to extend the continuous voter registration exercise across the country.

The residents made the call on Friday, at various centres in the state in a rush to meet up Friday August 31 deadline.

The potential voters said despite coming to the centres as early as 5 am they were not given any form to fill as at twelve noon.

While calling on the federal government and the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC to extend the CVR exercise, the potential voters said the failure to register the many people who thronged the centres may affect the outcome of the 2019 general elections.

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National Assembly Cuts INEC Budget By N200m

The National Assembly joint committee on the Independent National Electoral Commission has reduced the commission’s budget for the 2019 polls by N202 million.

On Tuesday, the committee had adopted N143.5bn for the polls and asked INEC to forward a breakdown of the budget.

After the commission complied with the directive, the lawmakers slashed the money earmarked for the conduct of training for continuous voter registration officials, airing of election jingles, local government grassroots enlightenment forums and outreach activities.

Chairman of the committee, Suleiman Nazif, later told journalists that the lawmakers were still available to consider any request from the presidency.

“The joint committee considered the request by President Muhammadu Buhari for the first component of the election budget of N143,512,529,455.00 to be vired under the 2018 budget, due to reasons of financial constraints established in the presidential communication to the national assembly; while the second component of N45, 695, 015,438.00 is expected to be funded by 2019 budget, also as requested by Mr. President,” Nazif said.

“Importantly, both the request of Mr. president and INEC submission to the committee marked the total package for the 2019 general election at N189,207,544,893.00.

“Therefore, the committee remains available at all times to consider any further request from the presidency for the second component of the N45, 695, 015,438.00 for the general election.

“Subsequently, after signifying a reduction of N200,272, 500.00, these reductions cover item nos 64,74,125 and 167.

“Therefore, the received figure of N143,312,256,955,13 as reached is the recommendation of the joint committee that will be forwarded to the leadership and appropriation committee for further legislative consideration.”

Radio Nigeria

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Over 100,000 Unclaimed Voters Cards In Anambra State – INEC

Over 100,000 unclaimed permanent voters cards (PVCs) remain unclaimed in the
twenty one Local Government Areas of Anambra State, South east Nigeria.

A breakdown of this figure indicates that the cards were from voter registrations just before the 2015 general election.

According to the Public Relations Officers for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Anambra State, Mr. Leo Nkedife:  “People register and they do not come to collect their voter’s cards.

“We have been creating awareness and carrying out sensitization programmes and even when you fix dates for people to come, they will not until the rush hour when it is about two or three days to close the exercise.

“As I speak to you, we have over 100,000 permanent voter’s cards that are yet to be claimed by the owners.

“These are registrations carried out before now and during the last general elections.”

He, however, added that permanent voter’s cards for the extended period were not ready at the moment, promising that when they were, it would be made public, before December.

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2019: INEC Announces Plan To Redesign Polling Units To Curb Vote Buying

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says the commission would redesign the structures of all polling units to curb vote buying during the 2019 general election.

“We are taking measures to ensure that it would be difficult for political parties and their candidates to buy votes.

“We are going to re-design our polling area in such a way that people cannot exhibit their ballot and show it to people in order to collect money.

“So those kind of structural re-design of the polling area is what we are going to do,” he said.

Lecky urged the media to expose political parties and candidates found engaging in vote buying during the election, to enable INEC prosecute the culprits.

“We need the media to help us reveal those who are buying votes and call them to order.

“We are not yet apprehending them, that is the work of the police, but we can provide information to prosecute them; the needed investigation will be done by the police,” he said.

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No New Date For Botched By-Election In Rivers- REC

The Resident Electoral Commissioner of Rivers State, Mr. Obo Effanga, says it is not certain when the Port Harcourt constituency 3 by-election would be concluded.

Widespread violence led to the suspension of the elections on Saturday.

Effanga said this on Sunday while addressing reporters.

He said the Commission would continue to conduct credible elections in the state, in spite of the roles played by the armed security personnel, whom he alleged accompanied hoodlums to disrupt the exercise yesterday.

Also speaking, Akwa Ibom state REC, Mike Igini, who was in Rivers to assist with the polls, estimated 100 out of 142 polling units used for the election witnessed violence.

He said one NEC staff was stabbed while another was beaten by hoodlums, while a Corps member had a fracture on the leg bone.

Cyril Omorogbe, Bayelsa State REC was also in Rivers for the exercise.

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INEC Boss Rules Out Postponement Of 2019 Elections

Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has said it will not postpone the 2019 general elections because of the delay in the passage of its budget.

Yakubu made the clarifications known while fielding questions from State House correspondents on Friday in Abuja.

According to him, there was no provision under the law for postponement of elections.

“I have said this over and over again; there are no conditions under which elections should be postponed, under section 26 of the Electoral Act.

The INEC chairman said under his leadership, the commission has been very transparent, adding that this is the first time in the history of the country that citizens would know the line by line expenditure of the commission.

We issued the timetable way in advance for the very first time in the history of our nation, citizens of Nigeria know when elections will take place one year in advance. It has never happen before, he said

“Secondly, also for the very first time in the history of our country, that citizens know the budget of the electoral commission, that budget has never been defended before the national assembly, as citizens know line by line how much the commission proposed, what the money is going to be spent on, I think I am very happy with this process.”

He said as of Friday, 12.1 million people had been registered for the 2019 polls.

The INEC chairman said the newly registered Nigerians would be added to the existing 70 million voters.

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INEC Begins Countdown To 2019 Elections

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, says formal activities for the 2019 general elections will begin from tomorrow.

The INEC chairman, professor, Mahmud Yakubu stated this in Abuja during a presentation of certificates to the leadership of the twenty-three newly registered political parties.

He said the commission had received one hundred and forty-four applications from political associations, but only the twenty-three met the necessary requirement stipulated by the constitution.

Professor Yakubu congratulates the new parties for meeting the requirement.
He said all the new parties were free to field candidates for the 2019 general elections with exception to the next month governorship election in Osun state.

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President Buhari Restates Commitment To Card Technology For 2019 Elections

President Muhammadu Buhari says he is committed to the use of card readers for the conduct of free and fair elections in the country.

In a statement issued on Wednesday night, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu said contrary to reports in some sections of the media, President Buhari was in support of the use of card readers for the 2019 General election.

He said: “Our attention has been drawn to incorrect and misleading reporting in several newspapers regarding the status of the Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill, 2018. The Presidency would like to set out the true status of the Bill.

“The Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill, 2018 was sent by the National Assembly to the Presidency at the end of June 2018, for assent. Following extensive consideration, the Presidency engaged with the National Assembly to raise concerns regarding errors and inconsistencies found in the submitted version.

“Following this, the National Assembly, on July 24, 2018, met to review and correct the Bill. The Bill was given, on July 24, 2018, a “clause by clause consideration” by the Senate.”

Shehu added: “The Votes and Proceedings from the Senate on July 24, 2018, attest to this. The Senate resolved to rescind its decision on a number of clauses included in the version they had earlier sent for consideration by the President, and to reconsider these clauses.

“According to the Senate Votes and Proceedings of Tuesday July 24, 2018: “The Senate: … notes that in the course of final cleaning of the Bill as passed, some provisions were found to negate the essence of the amendment; [and] Resolves to: Rescind its decision on Clauses 3,5,8,11(2), 13(b), 14 (4), 15(3), 18,21,23,24,28,32 and 38 of the Bill as passed, and recommit same to Committee of the whole for reconsideration and passage.”

“The re-considered Bill was passed by the Senate on July 24, 2018 the same day that plenary was adjourned to September 25, 2018. The revised Version of the Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill, 2018, with corrections by the National Assembly, and dated the 2nd of August, 2018, was received by the Presidency on the 3rd of August, 2018.

“The President has 30 days from the date of receipt, to assent to or decline the Bill. The Bill is therefore still under consideration by the Presidency,” he said.

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Osun 2018: APC Calls For Probe Of PDP Over Alleged Cloning Of PVCs

The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), has called on security agencies and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to urgently probe the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), over alleged cloning of Permanent Voters Cards (PVC) for use in the forthcoming Osun governorship election.

In a Press Statement signed by the APC’s Acting National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Yekini Nabena, he said the call for probe is in reaction to  to a Press Statement by the PDP where the PDP said starting with the forthcoming Osun governorship election, it would contend with the APC, “head to head, means for means, scheme to scheme, shenanigas for shenanigas, in all ramifications and magnitude, to discomfit them in all coming elections in the country.”

The APC said that the PDP’s statement which shows a public plan to rig elections poses a threat to Nigeria’s democracy.

“Perhaps the PDP needs to be reminded that our democracy is maturing and its crude election rigging methods such as ballot box snatching (recently displayed during last weekend by-election in Kogi state), announcement of concocted election results and other anomalies are no longer acceptable in our elections.”

“We are confident that the good people of Osun will resist the PDP’s deployment to takeover Osun State by force. The people’s will; the people’s vote is supreme. It must be respected and defended. That is democratic, progressive and the right thing.”

“We conclude by reminding the PDP of new realities as succinctly captured by President Muhammadu Buhari, ‘…the old Nigeria is slowly but surely disappearing and a new era is rising…’. Unlike undemocratic practices under past administrations, elections under the APC administration are increasingly freer and fairer — a very significant feat in our march for lasting and representative democracy” the statement reads.

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INEC Presents 2019 Election Budget To House Committee

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is currently in a meeting with the House of Representatives Committee on Electoral Matters and Political Parties Matters.

The meeting is for the presentation of the INEC 2019 general elections budget by the commission to the committee.

“Happening Now…..INEC 2019 General Elections Budget Presentation by Chairman INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu and members of the Commission before the House Committee on Electoral and Political Parties Matters,” INEC tweeted.

Details later…

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Vote Buying: Biggest Threat To Democracy – INEC

Dr Nkwachukwu Orji, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in charge of Anambra State, has described vote-buying as another big threat to democracy that needed everyone to join hands with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to eradicate.

Orji, in an interview with newsmen, disclosed that the commission is considering re-arranging the way polling booths are positioned during elections to make it difficult for anybody to see the place a voter voted.

According to him, the measure comes against the backdrop of massive vote-buying reported in recent elections in the country, including the governorship election in Ekiti, which analysts said, was characterised by vote-buying.

“INEC cannot check the problem of vote buying alone. It is a crime that security agents, members of the public who collect the money and politicians who buy the votes must come together to tackle,” Orji said.

 

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INEC Declares APC Haruna Isah Winner Of Lokoja /Kogi By-Election

Alhaji Haruna Isah, candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in the Lokoja/Kogi House of Representatives by-election held on August 11 has been declared winner.

The Returning Officer, Prof. Rotimi Ajayi, who announced the results on Sunday in Lokoja, said Isah polled 26, 860 votes to defeat Alhaji Bashir Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), who polled 14, 845 votes.

Ajayi said that Ahmed Imam of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) scored 2, 916 votes, while the candidates of the Accord Party and Alternative Democratic Congress (ADC) scored 149 votes and 2,984 votes, respectively.

The Labour Party scored 90 votes; Democratic Alternative scored 159 votes; while Megga Party of Nigeria scored 50 votes, Ajayi stated.

He said that 19,960 votes from 17 polling units were cancelled due to violence and other malpractices, saying that 15 of the affected polling units were in Lokoja Local Government Area, while two were from Kogi Local Government Area.

Giving a further breakdown of the election results, the Returning Officer said that 51, 669 voters were accredited for the election while only 50,036 actually cast their votes.

According to him, valid votes are 48,165, while rejected votes are 1,871.

The by-election was conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to fill the vacancy created by the death of the former occupant of the seat, Umar Buba Jibrin, on March 30.

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