The Resident Electoral Commissioner in Anambra State, Nkwachukwu Orji, has disclosed that some ad-hoc officials of the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) for the Saturday’s governorship election in the state declined to participate in the conduct of the election.
Mr Orji, who disclosed this in an interview with Channels TV in Awka, did not say how many of the officials stayed away from the poll, but he said their action affected the deployment of voting materials.
“Some of the ad-hoc staff we recruited dropped out in the process,” he said, enumerating the challenges the commission faced in the conduct of the election.
It is apparent that the affected officials may have been influenced by the general apprehension that the election would be disrupted by the outlawed pro-Biafra group, IPOB.
Mr Orji also disclosed that some of the transporters who had a contract with INEC refused to ferry election materials to polling units across the state.
He said some communities in the state prevented INEC from deploying voting materials.
He specifically mentioned some wards in Idemili South Local Government Area “where materials for up to 57 polling units were snatched away”.
Asked if INEC would conduct another election in such areas, the resident electoral commissioner said, “This is a decision that would be taken after this (voting)”.
“The process has to be completed and then a thorough assessment of what has happened would take place and then the commission would be in a position to take the next line of action,” he said.
Mr Orji said he did not consider the community action to be a major security issue.
“The security situation has been very pleasant to us. In fact, it is a pleasant surprise to many who expected that there would be breakdown of law and order and Anambra in the course of this election,” he added.
Voting ended on Saturday in Anambra by 4 p.m after INEC extended the exercise by two hours to accommodate the initial delay. But the voting has been extended till Sunday for those who could not vote due to malfunctioning of voting machines.
Votes are currently being tallied and the results released in polling units across the state.
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