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INEC laments vote-buying in election

INEC laments vote-buying in election

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Eniola Akinkuotu, Abuja

The Independent National Electoral Commission has expressed displeasure over the open buying of votes in the recently concluded Ekiti State governorship election won by the All Progressives Congress.

This was contained in a communiqué issued after a meeting of Resident Electoral Commissioners from all the states and the Federal Capital Territory.

According to the communiqué signed by Mallam Mohammed Haruna, the National Commissioner and Member, Information and Voter Education Committee, the commission noted that although the exercise was free and fair, vote-buying marred the poll.

It read in part, “The commission reviewed the conduct of the July 14 governorship election in Ekiti State and preparations for the September 22, 2018 Osun governorship election.

“It noted the satisfactory conduct of the Ekiti governorship election as attested to by both domestic and international observers, the media and other stakeholders.

“The meeting also noted with deep concern, the rising phenomenon of vote-buying during elections and restated its commitment and determination to continue to work with all stakeholders, especially the security agencies, to stem the ugly trend.”

The commission promised to further improve on the successes recorded in the Ekiti election.

The electoral body insisted that the Continuous Voter Registration exercise would be suspended from August 17, 2018, till after the 2019 general elections.

It, however, said the time for registration and collection of PVCs would now take place from 9 am to 5 pm every day as opposed to the 9 am to 3 pm.

The commission further stated that the distribution of cards and registration of new voters would not take place on weekdays only but would now hold on weekends.

The statement added, “The CVR exercise will take place between 9 am and 5 pm instead of 9am-3pm as obtained presently. There will also be registration on Saturdays and Sundays as well as public holidays (if any) within the period.

“The exercise will be suspended at 5 pm on Friday, August 17 until after the 2019 general elections.”

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