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Delta: Late arrival of materials delay accreditation of voters

Late arrival of electoral materials in various polling centres across Delta State yesterday delayed commencement of accreditation of voters for the state rerun election.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that as at 9.50am, electoral materials were yet to be distributed to polling units around Ibusa in Oshimili North Local Government Area.

At Ogwashi-Uku, in Aniocha South Local Government Area, as at 10.08am. materials were yet to get to some polling units.
Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the delay in distributing the materials was occasioned by the delay in releasing the materials on schedule.

The official added that accreditation had not started because distribution to the various units was posing some problems.
Meanwhile, reports from Ughelli in Ughelli North Local Government Area, indicate that materials were still being distributed as at 11:30am. Though voters’ turnout was very low at Ibusa and Ogwashi-Uku, heavy presence of security agents was noticed. Officers of the police, civil defence corps, immigration and prison services were seen around the various units.

It was also reported that at the Uzoigwe polling unit in Asaba, voters, who could not find their names in the voters’ register, expressed their anger when INEC Chairman, Attahiru Jega, visited the centre.
At the Asaba Girls Grammar School polling unit, many voters complained of not finding their names in the voters’ register. Meanwhile, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate, had his accreditation at 11:01am. in his hometown, Abigborodo, Warri South Local Government.
Uduaghan arrived the venue in company with his wife, supporters and security officers after a boat ride from Koko waterside.

The voting was expected to commence at noon after three hours of accreditation that started at 9am.
In Asaba, some of the INEC officials attributed the delay in accreditation to late arrival of materials.
According to INEC, “the accreditation was supposed to start at 9am. and end at noon but the exercise did not start until 10:30am.’’ Some of the polling units visited between 9a.m. and 12:30pm started the accreditation late.
Though there was a large turn out of voters in the state capital, most of the voters could not find their names in the voters’ register.

Mrs Linda Ofili, a civil servant of ward nine in AGGS polling unit, said: “We came here since 9am but INEC officials could not even find our names in the voters’ register.’’ Mr. Jude Olumide, also a voter in Ward 5 in St. Brigids polling unit, Asaba, said: “The voting materials did not arrive on time and we still find it very difficult finding our names in the voters’ register.’’
Also, Mr Philip Uchendu, a voter in ward six of Umuoyia polling unit said though accreditation started late, it was going on smoothly without violence.’’

However, some of the opposition parties said non-availability of names of voters on the register could mean disenfranchising the electorate from taking part in the rerun election. According to Andrew Obodo, an agent of Democratic Peoples Party (DPP), “there are lots of omissions in the register. Most of the people here cannot find their names in the register.’’ Mr. Gabriel Okpunor, another PDP agent, said: despite late arrival of voting materials, things were moving on smoothly without tension.

“Once the accreditation is completed voting will start immediately,’’ he added.

-Sun

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Posted by on Jan 6 2011. Filed under Delta, Governors, State News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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