Nigeria's democracy, electoral processes can't be halted by COVID-19 - INEC

Nigeria's democracy, electoral processes can't be halted by COVID-19 - INEC

- Elections and democratic processes must continue amid coronavirus

- This was the resolve of INEC on Tuesday, June 2, during a meeting held in Abuja

- INEC national chairman, Mahmood Yakubu, made it plain that the electoral body will strictly follow guidelines on safety and hygiene during elections in the country

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The national chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, has said that despite the coronavirus, electoral processes will go on in the country.

Yakubu projected this position during the first virtual consultative meeting with Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) held in Abuja on Tuesday, June 2, Daily Trust reports.

The INEC boss stated that halting elections in the nation as a result of the virus is much like truncating democracy.

He said that going by the fact that some international bodies have issued general policy directions that back democracy around the world and guidelines given by health bodies on how institutions can protect their staff members while they serve the public's interest, the commencement of democratic processes in the country is necessary.

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Nigeria's democracy, electoral processes can't be halted by COVID-19 - INEC

INEC national chairman, Mahmood Yakubu, made it plain that the electoral body will strictly follow guidelines on safety and hygiene during elections in the country.
Source: Getty Images

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However, Yakubu pointed out that for now, "There is, therefore, little international best practice to guide election managers in this regard."

Meanwhile, Legit.ng reported that INEC had fixed the dates for the upcoming governorship elections in Edo and Ondo states.

Yakubu in a press briefing at the commission’s headquarters in Abuja on Thursday, February 6, disclosed that the Edo governorship election would be held on September 19, while that of Ondo state will hold October 10.

Yakubu also urged candidates and politicians to desist from snatching electoral materials, hiring of thugs and other conducts that violate electoral rules. He said such conducts are punishable under INEC’s electoral rules.

In another post, Legit.ng reported that preparations by the INEC for the next general elections seemed to have begun. The commission plans to create more polling units across the country before 2023.

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The INEC chairman disclosed this on Thursday, February 6, in Abuja, after he received support equipment donated by the European Centre for Electoral Support (ECEC).

Back in August 2014, the commission attempted to create an additional 30, 027 Polling Units (PUs), with the north getting 21,615 and south 8, 412 units. However, this led to an uproar and INEC was forced to dump the plan.

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