INEC denies creating 30,000 new polling units

Daily Nigerian
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INEC chairman, Mahmood Yakubu
INEC chairman, Mahmood Yakubu

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has denied creating 30,000 additional polling units in order to compromise the 2019 general elections.

Kola Ologbondiyan, National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, on Friday alleged that INEC was planning to create 30,000 illegal polling units in some remote areas.

But a statement by the spokesman for INEC chairman, Rotimi Oyekanmi, on Sunday in Abuja, urged Nigerians to disregard the allegation.

Mr Oyekanmi explained that the commission received 3,789 requests nationwide for the creation of new polling units.

He said that in response to the requests, the commission directed its Resident Electoral Commissioners, RECs, to thoroughly asses and provide it with information on new settlements not served or inadequately served by existing polling units.

He added that the commissioners were also to provide information on areas with natural barriers that hinder access to existing polling units; as well as areas that were distant from existing polling units.

“The RECs are also to assess and provide information on areas affected by communal and other conflicts that make voting in existing polling units unsafe for voters,“ he said.

He said that these reports were still being awaited from the various States.

“It is these reports and the information they contain that will be collated and carefully examined by the commission in order to determine what changes may be necessary in the current polling units` profile of the country.

“Therefore, the insinuation that the commission intends to create 30,000 new polling units to compromise the 2019 General Elections is false, misleading, unfounded and should be disregarded.”

The commission assured the public that its decisions and actions shall always be guided by the provisions of the extant laws and its determination to respond to requests by Nigerians to serve them better.

He said that the creation of more polling units would be done only after full consultation with all stakeholders.

NAN