JUDE OPARA:

Apparently working ahead of time to prevent any logistics problem that might affect the 2011 general elections, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) last weekend said it has started the distribution of non – sensitive materials to the six geo-political zonal stores in the country.
INEC however expressed concern over what it termed the overzealousness of some members of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) whose actions are undermining its earnestness and proactive gesture.

Prof.Maurice Iwu

Prof.Maurice Iwu, INEC Chairman

In a statement  by the commission in Abuja and signed by the Director of Public Affairs, Emmanuel Umenger, INEC said it appreciates that at this difficult time in our history, the security agencies must be vigilant but pointed out that they should be able to separate issues without much ado.
“We however appeal to the hierarchy of the Nigeria Police to prevail on its overzealous members to show sensitivity and understanding to the commission’s efforts at delivering these materials. The commission’s deliveries at this time are simply informed by the need to overcome the logistics difficulties usually associated with elections and to ultimately deliver to Nigerians elections that are free and fair and are unencumbered by logistic constraints.”
He said INEC had received reports that a consignment of Collapsible Voting Cubicles being conveyed to its Oshogbo zonal store was intercepted by the police. The commission has since entreated the Ondo State Commissioner of Police to intervene so that the consignment could be released.
“The truck was inexplicably detained in spite of detailed explanations by officials of the commission and the contractor conveying the cubicles,” the statement added.
It would be recalled that shortly before the Anambra State governorship election last month, a truck conveying similar voting cubicles, destined for the Port Harcourt zonal store, was involved in a minor accident at Okija. The police had raised alarm and detained the truck for a very long time.

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