INEC restates commitment to hitch free 2023 general elections in Osun
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Osun said every arrangements to achieve a successful and hitch-free conduct of the 2023 general elections in the state has been concluded.
Mr Mutiu Agboke, the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner in the state, made this known on Thursday, during the commission’s election stakeholders meeting held at the State INEC Headquarters in Osogbo.
Agboke said both the regular and ad-hoc staffs needed for the elections had been trained.
He said the commission would be deploying 376 trained Supervisory Presiding Officers (SPOs) comprising Senior Level Federal Civil Servants, who are expected to train 15,052 Presiding/Assistant Presiding Officers (POs/APOs) made up of mainly National Youth Service Corps memebers for the general elections.
He said 746 Collation/Returning Officers had also been selected to work with the SPOs and PO/APOs on the elections days in the state.
Agboke, however, explained that the purpose of the stakeholders meetings, which were held from time to time, was to update election stakeholders on the preparedness of the commission for the elections.
“I commend you all for the effective collaboration that has existed between your various organisations and the commission, in the effort to build a sustainable democratic culture in Osun State.
“Indeed, the progressive improvement that have characterised the electoral process is largely due to the tremendous goodwill of all election stakeholders,” he said.
Agboke, breaking down the details of how the election(s) process would be conducted in Osun, said Presidential, Senatorial, Federal and State House of Assembly elections would be held in 3,763 polling units across the state.
He, however, said governorship election would not hold in the state because Osun already had its governorship election in 2022.
The REC explained that there are 1,954, 800 registered voters in Osun and that a total of 1,534, 948 Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) had been collected from the commission for the elections, with 391,141 PVCs uncollected.
He said the PVC remains sacrosanct for the elections, stating that anyone without a PVC would not be allowed to vote on election day, saying “No PVC , no voting,”
Agboke said the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) machines would be used for accreditation of voters, adding that the commission would be deploying 4,134 BVAS machines to the 332 Wards (INEC Registration Areas) in the state, for the elections.
He said INEC is a neutral election umpire and that nobody would be announced a winner except those that scores the required number of votes.
Agboke warned election officials against compromise, stating that any regular staff or ad hoc staff that tries to circumvent the election would be prosecuted and sent to jail