From Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has expressed readiness to conduct the Aba North/South Federal Constituency by-election in Abia State, scheduled for this weekend.
INEC, in a statement signed by National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, said that a total number of 498,390 registered voters are expected to cast their ballots at 609 polling units.
While announcing that the Commission will deploy over 2,970 officials for the election, he revealed that all the sensitive materials have been delivered to the Central Bank in Umuahia, Abia State for inspection on Thursday.
‘INEC met on Tuesday and among other issues deliberated on the preparations for the conduct of Aba North/South Federal Constituency by-election in Abia State, scheduled to hold on March 27, 2021.
‘The Commission has firmed up its preparations for the election. A total of 498,390 registered voters are expected to cast their ballots at 609 polling units spread across 24 Registration Areas (RAs) in the two Local Government Areas of the Constituency.
‘The Commission will deploy over 2,970 officials for the election. All the non-sensitive materials required for the conduct of the election at the two Local Government Areas of the Constituency have been delivered and batched according to the Registration Areas. All the ad-hoc staff required for the conduct of the election have been trained awaiting deployment.
‘All the sensitive materials have been delivered to the Central Bank in Umuahia, Abia State and will be inspected on Thursday March 25, 2021 and dispatched to the two Local Government Area offices of the Commission,’ the statement read.
Appealing against voter aparthy, the Commission equally pleaded that they eschew violent in any form, assuring that it is committed to the safety and welfare of its election duty staff and the voters.
‘The Commission calls on all the registered voters in the Constituency to come out en masse to exercise their franchise as representation is at the heart of democracy and huge voter turnout enforces and reinforces the mandate given to elected representatives.
‘The Commission enjoins all the voters and stakeholders to remain calm, shun violence and other acts capable of creating fear, anxiety and apprehension in the electoral environment. Violent and unwholesome acts undermine the sovereign rights of the people to clean elections and deprives the constituency of quality representation.
‘The Commission is committed to the safety and welfare of its election duty staff and the voters and will strengthen its collaboration with the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security in this regard.’