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INEC Releases Guidelines For Conduct Of 2019 General Elections

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Monday released the regulations and guidelines for the conduct of the general elections.

The 33 pages document obtained by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja, said Smart Card Readers (SCRs) and Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) would be used for the forthcoming elections.

It reads, “Voting shall be in accordance with the Continuous Accreditation and Voting System (CAVS) procedures as specified in these Regulations and Guidelines, the Election Manual and any other Guide issued by the Commission.

“No person shall be allowed to vote at any Polling Unit/Voting Point Settlement/Voting Point other than the one at which his/her name appears in the Register of Voters and he/she presents his/her permanent voter’s card to be verified by the Smart Card Reader (SCR), or as otherwise determined by the Commission.”

It added that each voter shall cast his/her vote in person at the Polling Unit/Voting Point Settlement/Voting Point where he/she registered or was assigned, in the manner prescribed by the Commission.

It also stated that separate queue shall be created between men and women, where the culture does not allow the mingling of men and women.

It added that Presiding Officers would also create a separate queue for People Living With Disabilities (PWDs).

According Section 10 (b) of the guidelines, “accreditation and voting shall commence at 8.00am and close at 2:00pm, provided that all voters already on the queue by 2:00pm shall be allowed for accreditation and voting.

“(d) The accreditation process shall comprise reading of the Permanent Voter’s Card (PVC) and authentication of the voter’s fingerprint using the SCR; checking of the Register of Voter.”

Section 11 (v) of the guidelines also requested a voter to remove his/her cell phone or any photographic device before proceeding to voting cubicle.

Also section 11(c) stated that “where a voter’s PVC is read but the name of the voter is not on the Register of Voters, APO II shall refer the voter to the PO or APO (VP) who shall politely request the voter to leave the Polling Unit”.

Section 11(d) also states that: “In the event that the PVC fails to be read by the Smart Card Reader, the APO I shall refer the voter to the PO or APO (VP) who shall politely request the voter to leave the Polling Unit.’’

Subsection (e) added that “where a voter’s PVC is read and the SCR shows the details of another person, rather than the details of the cardholder as printed on the PVC, the APO I shall:

“(i) Refer the voter to APO II to confirm that the details of the voter in the Register of Voters correspond to those on the PVC;

“(ii) APO II if satisfied that the holder of the card is on the Register of Voters, shall record the phone number of the voter in the appropriate box on the Register of Voters; and

“(iii) Proceed with the accreditation of the voter.

“(f) In all cases from 11(b) to 11(e), the Presiding Officer shall fill the appropriate forms in the PU booklet and make a report.

“Affected voters in 11(b) and 11(e) qualify to be issued ballot papers after consultation with Polling Agents.”

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BIG STORY

2023: Every Political Candidate Must Declare Bank Asset – INEC

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The Independent National Electoral Commission announced on Friday that in the 2023 general election, it will shine a spotlight on politicians and political parties to identify the sources of financing for their campaigns.

As a result, the commission committed to forming a committee to oversee election spending before the elections.

The Chairman of INEC, Mahmood Yakubu, stated this in Abuja during a policy roundtable conference on political campaign finance organized by The Electoral Forum, an organ of the Initiative for Research, Innovation, and Advocacy in Development with support from the MacArthur Foundation, and represented by a National Commissioner, Kunle Ajayi.

He said, “As long as we have not notified anybody that the race to the 2023 general election has started, we are not unaware of what anybody is doing. We follow the law strictly.

“We have not officially declared a notice for the 2023 general election, but when we so declare, we will put our monitoring committees to motion like the Central Bank of Nigeria, DSS, EFCC, the ICPC, (commercial) banks, and other law enforcement agencies. We have that plan already.

“Every candidate must be made to declare his bank asset. That is where they draw out their money, so we will make them present their statement of account right from the onset. We will make it mandatory for them to turn in their bank statement so that if they say they are doing billboard and the account remains the same, then there is a problem,” he said.

The INEC chairman also said that INEC would also monitor the movement of money on election days to help tackle vote-buying at polling units.

Mahmood said that through the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, commercial banks would be mandated to report all suspicious transactions ahead of the election.

The INEC chairman also threatened to prosecute any bank that failed to cooperate.

Speaking on the issue of vote-buying, Mahmood said, “We are going to establish finance monitoring teams and they will be among the electorate but they (politicians and political parties) won’t know.

“We are going to do it in a way that the influence of money will be reduced because we want to make the electoral field a level playing ground for both rich and poor candidates and electorates. Everybody will go on an equal economic level so that you won’t influence the voting pattern,” he added.

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NEWS

2023: “We’ll Fight, Vote Against Tinubu For Opting To Continue Buhari’s Policies” – Ortom

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Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has explained why he will battle and campaign against Bola Tinubu, the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, for the presidency.
Ortom explained that he would urge his people to vote against Tinubu for insisting on continuing with the policies of President Muhammadu Buhari if elected Nigeria’s next president.
Recall that the APC National Leader last week informed Buhari of his intentions to run for the Presidency in 2023. The former Lagos State governor said he would continue with the policies of Buhari’s administration if elected as president.
Ortom, on the other hand, criticized Buhari’s policies and programs.

He spoke on Thursday in Makurdi, the State capital, while assenting to the amended Open Grazing Prohibition and Ranches Establishment Law 2017. The Governor warned that the presidential aspirant would fail in his ambition if he opts to pursue Buhari’s policies.

According to Ortom: “I heard about one of the presidential aspirants who said he would continue from Buhari’s good legacies. I want to tell him that if nobody has told him, me I want to tell him that Buhari’s policies and programs are not good.”

“And anybody who is saying that, some of us in our own little way, we will fight him and tell our people to vote against him. So, he has failed abinitio.”

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NEWS

Be Objective In Evaluating My Government – Buhari To Nigerians

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President Muhammadu Buhari has urged Nigerians to be objective in evaluating his campaign pledges ahead of the 2019 elections.

Buhari stated that his administration was doing all possible to leave a Nigeria that was better than the one he inherited.

Speaking at Kafanchan as part of his two-day visit to Kaduna to commission projects overseen by Governor El-Rufai, he urged Nigerians to be objective in their assessments of his government’s achievements thus far.

While visiting the Emir of Jema’a Alhaji Muhammadu Isa’s palace in Kafanchan, President Buhari stated that his administration was committed to implementing programs that would enhance people’s lives.

READ ALSO: I’ll Pay Your Children’s WAEC Fee, Stabilize The Country If I’m Elected President — Tinubu

He enjoined Nigerians to have confidence in the ability of the security agents to curb security challenges bedeviling the country and restore normalcy in the system. President Muhammadu Buhari said he was against anybody raising an army of thugs.

He emphasized, “This must be very clear.” In his remarks, Governor Nasir El-Rufai observed that President Buhari has done so well on security in the country. Governor El-Rufai added that Buhari’s investment since he assumed office on security has lessened attacks.

According to Governor El-Rufai, Kafanchan has become much safer than it used to be. Alhaji Muhammadu Isa, the Emir of Jema’a appealed for the establishment of a permanent base of Air Force and Mobile Police in the area.

He also requested the restoration of the rail transport from Kafanchan to other parts of the country.

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