The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is gearing up for the Bayelsa, Kogi, and Imo governorship elections scheduled for November 11, and the Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, is leaving no stone unturned in ensuring that the elections are conducted with the utmost integrity and impartiality.
In a recent address to INEC staff, Yakubu uinderscored the significance of maintaining non-partisanship and integrity as the foundation of the electoral commission’s operations. He emphasized that INEC is not a political party and does not have a candidate in these upcoming elections. Its primary role is to facilitate the democratic process and ensure that the people of Bayelsa and Imo States can freely choose their governors.
Yakubu’s commitment to a credible election process is evident. He urged the Electoral Officers (EOs) in the respective states to activate Registration Area Centres (RACs) early, ensuring a smooth and efficient election day. This proactive approach reflects INEC’s determination to see its officials fulfill their responsibilities effectively.
Additionally, INEC is not leaving any room for complacency. Yakubu mentioned the organization of refresher training for poll officials, which is vital in keeping the staff updated on electoral procedures and guidelines. This extra effort is a testament to INEC’s commitment to achieving a seamless and transparent electoral process.
One of the key aspects of ensuring a successful election is maintaining security. Yakubu met with the Members of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICESS) in both states. The primary objective of this meeting was to assess the readiness of security agencies in preparation for the election. Discussions centered on measures to protect voters, election personnel, materials, collation centers, and transport providers. The emphasis on security reaffirms INEC’s dedication to conducting elections that are free from threats and intimidation.
In his quest to oversee the election preparations comprehensively, Yakubu also toured INEC facilities in Yenagoa to inspect non-sensitive materials. This hands-on approach ensures that all logistical elements are in place for a smooth electoral process.
Yakubu was not alone in this endeavor; he was accompanied by National Commissioners and Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) in both states. This collaborative approach demonstrates the collective commitment of INEC’s leadership and staff to the success of the off-cycle election.