Governor Adams Oshiomhole has hailed the improved electoral process introduced by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), whereby accreditation and voting are done at the same time.
Speaking shortly after casting his vote at Unit 1, Ward, Iyamho Primary School, Etsako West Local Government Area at 11.13am, Wednesday in the Edo State Governorship election, Oshiomhole who also said he was impressed with the large turn-out of voters however said there were some incidents in some parts of the state which the security agencies and INEC should look into.
On the improved electoral process, Oshiomhole said: “I have always wondered why INEC wants people to accredit and wait and you start later. For the middle class, that was not something many of them could cope with. For the poor people, they have had to carry the burden of our democracy by waiting the whole day. So, I believe that INEC has made a sensible improvement.
“You get accreditation, you vote and you go home. It doesn’t have to cost you a whole day. I think this is a very civilised way of doing it. If every other thing goes perfect, this is good. This is more of a victory for the middle class who cannot stand under the sun and under the rain.”
While hailing the orderly manner at his polling Unit, Oshiomhole said: “I believe this is a perfect example of the way it should be, but I cannot tell you that this is the way it is in other places because I have not been to those places. But I have received a report just now from the Onojie of Opoji that PDP thugs went and removed the card reader in order to prevent the people of Opoji from voting. So, we are dealing with that because the people have a right to vote. That right cannot be compromised, and INEC has a duty, a non-negotiable duty to ensure that the people of Opoji have a right to vote.
“I don’t know how that happened because they are supposed to have enough security in every polling unit, and if you have security in every polling unit, and some rascals and hoodlums can still come and carry the card reader, then that raises a number of issues both on the part of INEC and the security people detailed to protect the INEC, the materials, the voters in Opoji. That doesn’t mean this is happening everywhere, but that is where I have a report now.
“There are reports we are following up, but at this point, it will be too early for one to draw any conclusion. My unit is only is only one village out of thousands of villages in Edo State.
“My joy is the people are ready to celebrate democracy. They are ready to celebrate democracy by the way they have queued up.”
He continued, “I have got reports of gunshots at Okpella. I am not surprised about that because we have told the security more than three weeks ago. When they postponed this election.
Oshiomhole further said, “I have also received reports that the former member of the House of Assembly at Emu in Esan South East, this morning noticing that the people are not voting for PDP, opened fire and was shooting sporadically. I have drawn the attention of the police to ensure that gunmen, whether local or imported are not allowed to disrupt an exercise that will otherwise be a celebration of democracy. But as I said, we are monitoring and every report that I get, I will pass it on to the security agencies to see what they can do about it. So, we are monitoring.”
He added, “The process is more important than the outcome, because I believe that if the process is corrected and it works, then Nigeria is on. You will have an accountable government; you have a government that holds office at the pleasure of the citizens, and therefore a government that cannot afford not to listen to the citizens. That is the whole essence of transferring power to the people.”
CPS to Edo State Governor
CPS to Edo State Governor