From Ahmad Mohammed, Bauchi
The Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Bauchi State, Ibrahim Abdullahi, has explained that over 70,000 eligible voters whose permanent Voters card PVC is ready yet to collect their card
Abdullahi stated this at a stakeholders meeting held at the INEC headquarter yesterday in Bauchi.
He said that “about 70, 000 Permanent Voter Cards are still with the Commission which have yet to be collected by their owners, and appealed to politicians that that magic you use in mobilising people to come out during elections to vote for you, please use that same Strategy to make people come out and claim the over 70, 000 PVCs yet to be collected across the Local Government areas of the state.”
The Commissioner told politicians and political parties not to be deceived by the crowd that openly show them support but advised them that “some of them do not even have PVCs while some will forget to pick theirs to the election.
He said “So I appeal to you all to encourage all your supporters to come and collect their cards so they can use them to vote for you and your party.”
Abdullahi said only those who voted in the 2015 general elections and those who have collected their PVCs as at December, 2017 are the eligible voters in the by-election on August 11th, 2018.
He said that the Commission had improved the system of voting explaining that there will be continuous accreditation and voting during the election whereby voters will be accredited and allowed to cast their votes immediately.
The Commissioner appealed to Political parties to join hands with the Commission to ensure a hitch-free by-election promising that “INEC will be fair to all and create a free leveled playing ground for all.”
He promised that vote buying which he said was an “inducement” of the electoral process will not be cordoned, as culprits with be punished.
Abdullahi explained that based on the Senate’s action and in line with Section 76 (2) and 25 (2) of the electoral act, INEC is mandated to conduct a by-election to fill the vacuum within 30 days.
He said elections will be held in 445 Voting Points, 1, 499 Polling Units in 75 wards of the 7 Local Government Areas of Bauchi, Toro, Dass, Tafawa Balewa, Bogoro, Alkaleri and Kirfi, that make up the Senatorial District.
The Stakeholders that attended the meeting included various political parties under the aegis of the Inter-Party Advisory Council, security agencies and the media.
The Bauchi South Senatorial seat became vacant when the then Senator, Ali Wakili reportedly slumped and was rushed to the National Hospital, Abuja but was declared dead on Saturday, March 17th, 2018.
Abdullahi explained that the Commission had received a letter from the Senate declaring the Bauchi South Senatorial seat vacant on the 13th July, 2018.