The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has commenced distribution of non-sensitive materials required for the conduct of the forth coming Ondo and Edo States Governorship elections.
INEC Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee (IVEC), Festus Okoye disclosed this in Benin City at a workshop for journalists in Edo State
on Election Process and Procedure ahead of the September 19, governorship election in the State.
He said that the sensitive materials would be delivered ahead of the elections.
The two elections and 15 pending bye-elections, he said are being conducted within the context of the COVID-19 pandemic which has substantially altered the various ways of conducting elections.
“We have responded timeously, creatively and innovatively to the pandemic by altering the modus operandi of conducting elections.”
According to him, within the context, INEC reviewed its policy of conducting elections within the context of COVID-19 and has also released supplementary guidelines and regulations to regulate activities of the various stakeholders, including, security, media and political parties.
He described Ondo and Edo elections as ‘end of tenure’ elections with strict and legal timeout occasioned by the provisions of Section 178 (2) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended).
He assured that INEC would conduct the elections in a manner that would increase transparency in the electoral process.
Earlier, the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Edo State, Dr. Johnson Alalibo Sinikiem said that Edo State election would be the first major election to be conducted by INEC since the outbreak of COVID-19, assuring of the commission’s commitment to free, fair and credible poll.
On his part, Deputy Director of Publicity, Mr Andy Ezeani had said that the training session was aimed at acquainting journalists with the new procedure for conducting elections in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.