…Insecurity, IDPs’ll pose challenges to 2023 elections –INEC

From Aidoghie Paulinus, Abuja

Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, has said growing insecurity in several parts of the country and increasing number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), will pose challenges to the conduct of the 2023 general elections.

Yakubu stated this during a town hall meeting organised by the Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE) with the theme: ‘Agenda Setting for Sustainable Democratic Culture’ in Abuja.

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He, however, said the 2023 general elections would come with challenges, but that the commission is determined to surmount the challenges and conduct free, fair, credible and inclusive election.

Yakubu who was represented by the National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee for INEC, Festus Okoye, said the country was entering a critical and challenging phase in its electoral process.

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He said President Muhammadu Buhari having signed the new Electoral Act has  constituted the constitutive legal instruments for the conduct of the 2023 general elections.

He said INEC has released the timetable and schedule of activities for the conduct of the 2023 general elections, fixing presidential and National Assembly elections for February 25, 2023 and governorship and state assembly elections for  March 11, 2023.

“Growing insecurity in several parts of the country and the increasing number of internally displaced persons will pose challenges to the conduct of the 2023 general election. So many of the internally displaced persons are in the houses of friends and relatives and have lost their Permanent Voters Cards and it is next to impossibility to recreate their constituencies and polling units. This is because section 47(1) of the Electoral Act clearly provides that “A person intending to vote in an election shall present himself with his voter’s card to a presiding officer for accreditation at the polling unit in the constituency in which his name is registered.”

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