Some trained ad-hoc staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) around 11:00 a.m. besieged the commission’s head office in Owerri, the state capital, over alleged non-inclusion in the elections duties.
The ad-hoc staff, numbering about 300, accused the state’s Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) of excluding them in the process.
One of them, Mike Echetama, told the news agency of Nigeria (NAN) that they were trained staff of tertiary institutions in the state who applied to work as Collation Officers and returning officers during the elections but their names were not on the list.
Mr Echetama, a staff of the Alvan Ikoku Federal College of Education, Owerri, said they had been at the INEC premises since the eve of the elections.
He alleged that INEC failed to publish any list of ad hoc staff for the elections, leaving them in the dark.
“We learnt that only staff of the Federal University of Technology Owerri will be needed in the elections,” he said.
He also lamented that if they were not shortlisted for the work they would be stranded as a result of the restriction in movement.
Reacting, the INEC Public Relations Officer, Emmanuela Okpara, said collation officers would be needed after the elections. She said selected ad-hoc staffers would receive text messages to that effect.
She also denied the alleged preference for FUTO staff for the election.
Meanwhile, voting started late in many parts of Imo due to the late arrival of INEC officials.
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