Otuoke residents say INEC not prepared for the polls


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Some residents of Otuoke, in Ogbia Local Government Area, of Bayelsa, have expressed sadness over the postponement of the general elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The residents described the postponement as lack of preparedness on the part of INEC.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Otuoke, is the home town of former President Goodluck Jonathan.

Reacting to the development on Saturday in Otuoke, Engr Felix Okpu, a Chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ogbia described the postponement of the elections as a very sad development for Nigerians.

He said the postponement in the early hours of the election day had shown that the electoral body was never ready to conduct free fair elections in Nigeria.

“INEC’s action is capable of causing cold war, which may result to verbal war between the contesting polical parties, and that the body has shown their inconpetence to conduct free fair elections, in Nigeria.

“This has never been done in the history of our country by postponing it in the morning of election, it is lack of preparedness and planning, on the part of INEC.

“So many people have traveled because of the election to cast their votes in their various communities and states, so how will they feel?” he queried.

He urged members of the PDP to remain calm and abide by the rule of law and never cause any trouble because of the postponment.

In another development Mr Azibola Oru, a PDP faithful in Otuoke, described the postponement as lack of capacity to conduct free and fair elections in the country.

He said INEC had created the avenue for people to suspect and doubt its ability to conduct credible polls.

“It really gives room for suspicion, as our trust in its performance has been dented,” he said.

NAN reports that Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, INEC Chairman, postponed the general elections, with the Presidential and National Assembly elections scheduled to hold on Feb. 16 moved to Feb 23.

The Governorship/State House of Assembly are also shifted from March 2, to March 9.

Yakubu in a nationwide broadcast, attributed the postponement to lack of adequate logistics and some other challenges.

He said the postponement would give the commission room to address the identified challenges to conduct credible elections. (NAN)

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