Anxiety, doubt over conduct of Edo guber poll

Anxiety, doubt over conduct of Edo guber poll

Wednesday, September 7, 2016 6:59 pm

INEC Chairman, Yakub Mahmood

INEC Chairman, Yakub Mahmood

Jethro Ibileke/Benin


There is palpable anxiety and doubt over the conduct of the much awaited gubernatorial election in Edo state scheduled for this weekend.

Just this (Wednesday) morning, top officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), heads of security ‎agents and a representative of the Director-General of the National Youth Service Corps had at a stakeholders’ meeting, assured of their preparedness conduct a smooth, free, fair and conclusive election.

Rumours however went round in the afternoon of Wednesday that due to security concern, the election might be shifted by the authorities.

Addressing journalists on Wednesday evening in Benin, the National Chairman of INEC, Mahmood Yakubu, said the Commission was yet to come out with a decision on whether the election was to hold or not, as it was still consulting ‎with security agents.

‎Reacting to the alleged plan to postpone the election, members of civil society groups ‎in the state said the alleged security threat does not warrant any postponement of the much anticipated gubernatorial election.

Secretary to the state chapter of All Progressives Congress (APC), Osaro Idah, said any postponement should not take too long before it is conducted.

On his part, the State Chairman of Peoples Democratic Congress (PDP), Chief Dan Orbih, said democracy is under threat in the state.

‎As at the time of filling this report, no definite decision has been taken by INEC on the conduct of the election.

‎It would be recalled that thousands of candidates for this year’s General Certificate of Education examination conducted by the West African Examination Council (WAEC), had on Monday staged a protest calling for a shift of the gubernatorial election due to its clash ‎with their mathematics examination which was to hold on Saturday.

The State Security Service and the Police had also in a joint statement on Wednesday advised INEC to shift the date of the election over fears of terror attack ahead of the celebration of the Muslim festival of Id-el-Kabir fixed for Monday.

The two security agencies said the advise is based on information that terrorist are planning s string of attacks during the Muslim celebrations across the country, including Edo State.


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