INEC Pull Down Polling Units From Unauthorized Places 

Moses Ofodeme

The Independent National Electoral Commission,INEC has removed 749 Polling Units from unauthorized locations across Nigeria.

Those affected are Units located in Shrines, Mosques, Churches, Royal Palaces and private properties.

INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu disclosed this at a meeting with Resident Electoral Commissioners,(RECs) at the Commission’s headquarters in Abuja, Wednesday.

According to Yakubu,  “after consultation with stakeholders, the Commission has successfully removed 749 Polling Units from inappropriate locations to appropriate public facilities or open spaces in line with our policy to guarantee unencumbered access to Polling Units for all voters. Of this figure, 232 were removed from private properties, 145 royal palaces, 6 Mosques, 21 Churches and 9 Shrines. The remaining 336 Polling Units were relocated for various reasons which include distance, difficult terrain, congestion, communal conflict, new settlements and general insecurity.

The INEC Chairman also disclosed that Nigeria has a total of 176,846 Polling Units.

Yakubu said, “The After wide ranging consultations with stakeholders and fieldwork by our officials, the 56,872 Voting Points and Voting Point Settlements were converted and added to the existing 119,974 Polling Units. Consequently, the Commission is glad to report that 25 years since the current Polling Units were created in 1996, the hard nut is finally and successfully cracked after several unsuccessful attempts. Nigeria now has 176,846 full-fledged Polling Units.

Meanwhile, the Commission, has announced the dates for Ekiti and Osun gubernatorial elections.

Yakubu said, “In the sequence of off-season elections, the Ekiti and Osun State Governorship elections are holding next year. In keeping with our policy of announcing the dates of elections in advance to enable early and effective preparations by all concerned, the Commission has approved that the Ekiti State Governorship election will hold on Saturday 18th June 2022 while the Osun State Governorship election will hold one month later on Saturday 16th July 2022.

The detailed Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the two elections have been uploaded on the Commission’s website and social media platforms. We implore political parties and aspirants to ensure rancour-free primaries and thereafter conduct peaceful electioneering campaigns.”

He said, “Looking to the near future, the Commission is preparing to conduct the remaining off-season end of tenure elections ahead of the 2023 General Election. Already, activities listed in the timetable for the Anambra State Governorship election are being implemented. So too are those of the FCT Area Council election holding on 12th February 2022.”

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