INEC recruits 8, 553 ad hoc staff for Lagos by-elections

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Electoral commission officers count votes at Shagari Health Unit polling station in Yola, Adamawa State on February 23, 2019 after the polls were closed during the day of the General elections. - Nigeria began counting votes in presidential elections, even as many people had yet to even cast their ballot because of delays in the opening of polling units and problems with staffing and technology. Nigeria's Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) last week announced a one-week delay to the election, just hours before it was due to get under way. The presidential contest will see incumbent Muhammadu Buhari (APC) seek to win a second four-year term against former vice president Atiku Abubakar (PDP). (Photo by CRISTINA ALDEHUELA / AFP) (Photo credit should read CRISTINA ALDEHUELA/AFP/Getty Images)

By Yemi Adeleye
Lagos, Dec. 4, 2020 The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Lagos State says 8,553 ad hoc staff have been engaged for Saturday’s Lagos East by-elections.

INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner, Sam Olumekun, made this disclosure at a news conference on Friday in Lagos.

Olumekun, who urged all eligible voters to adhere strictly to COVID-19 protocols, said that the ad hoc staff comprised 1,928 Presiding Officers, 6,348 Assistant Presiding Officers and 193 Supervisory Presiding Officers.

According to him, the number also includes 84 Registration Area (Ward) Collation Officers, comprising 71 for Lagos East Senatorial District, six for Kosofe Constituency II and two Constituency Collation/Returning Officers.

Giving the delimitation of Lagos East Senatorial District, Olumekun said that the district had five Local Government Areas (LGAs) with 1, 978 polling units, 71 wards, and 1,343,448 registered voters.

Providing the delimitation of Kosofe II State Constituency, the INEC boss said that the constituency had 337 polling units spread across six wards with a total of 280,363 registered voters.

He said that LGAs collation centres would be at the INEC Offices in Somolu, Ikorodu, Epe, Ibeju-Lekki except for Kosofe which had been situated at Anglican Comprehensive High School, Ogudu.

Olumekun said that Lagos East Senatorial Constituency Collation Centre would be at INEC office in Somolu.

The INEC boss said that out of 1,343,448 registered voters in Lagos East, only 1,168,790 voters had collected Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs).

He explained that out of 147, 073 registered voters in Epe, 131,109 voters had PVCs; out of 109,729 registered voters in Ibeju-Lekki, only 94,047 had PCVs while in Ikorodu, out of 336,532 registered voters, only 277,750 had PVCs.

According to him, in Somolu, out of 307, 066 registered voters, only 276, 929 have PVCs while in Kosofe, out of 443, 048 registered voters, only 389,058 voters have PVCs.

“The by-elections will be conducted in strict compliance with COVID-19 protocols. We will be professional in the conduct of this by-elections.

“It should also be understood that elections must not be an avenue to spread Coronavirus in the state,” he said.

Olumekun said that for crowd control at collation centres, the commission would allow only collation/returning officers, INEC personnel, one agent per party/candidate, approved and designated security officers.

He said also to be admitted were properly accredited election observers and media – one person per print media with a photo journalist and one reporter and camera man for TV stations.

The REC, who urged all stakeholders to assist INEC in fighting election malpractices such as violence, vote buying, ballot snatching and among others, said that the commission was committed to conducting free and fair elections.

Olumekun added that the elections would be conducted from 8:30am to 2:30pm at various polling units with simultaneous accreditation and voting.

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