As the INEC is making the finishing touches to the conduct of general elections, the commission says all ad hoc staff will be taken through the nitty gritty of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) and all the electioneering processes.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that BVAS is an electronic device designed by INEC to read Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) and authenticate voters through the voters’ fingerprints to prove their eligibility to vote at a particular polling unit.
In an interview with NAN, in Ibadan, on Thursday, Dr Mutiu Agboke, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Osun State, maintained that the ad hoc job for the forthcoming general elections was so special.
“Not just for corps members, but for those who are going to serve as supervising polling officers and collation officers.
“Everyone must be outstanding in the job, as the commission is not going to tolerate anybody sabotaging the election processes for us.
“We are going to train and retrain all ad hoc staff, organised refresher courses for them, all these will enhance the election processes to achieve success,” he said.
Agboke added there was Code of Conduct for the election which all the ad hoc staff would sign, saying anyone that did contrary to it shall face the wrath of law.
On security, the Osun REC said the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) in each state met regularly for the purpose of curtailing criminal excesses before, during and after elections.
According to him, members of ICCES are the Police, NSCDC, ICPC and EFCC.
“ICCES are going to be on the lookout, not just the buyers and sellers of votes but those who would come to the poliing units with third party PVC.
“The commission will continue to collaborate with security agencies because they have to secure us and protect election materials while INEC mandate is to conduct, supervise and ensure that there is a credible process,” he said.
Agboke added that the commission also incorporated National Orientation Agency (NOA) and National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) into its doing.
The REC further said that the commission would soon conduct mock accreditation across the country before the general elections.
According to him, the exercise will be done at selected polling units to ascertain the performance of the BVAS.
“We have used BVAS in some of our by-elections and off season governorship elections.
“But in the wisdom of the commission, it decided that the new technology of BVAS has to be test-run, look at the way it will perform since the commission has not used it during general elections.
” This will make us know whether its efficiency is still guaranteed or otherwise.
“So the commission will announce the date for the exercise soon, it has picked the senatorial districts, local governments, wards and polling units where the mock accreditation will be held,” he explained.
He further reiterated that INEC was not ready to postpone or cancel the forthcoming general elections.
He said the elections would hold, “notwithstanding any challenge or challenges, we are going to have the general elections by God’s grace”.
On other preparations by the commission, Agboke said INEC in various states “are engaging political parties on how to make campaign violence-free.
“Collection of PVCs is still ongoing; we have returned to local government areas and we urge owners of uncollected PVCs to come out for collection.
“PVC is crucial and vital in this forthcoming general elections, as no one without it would be allowed to vote, in addition, no accreditation through the BVAS no voting”.