Edo Tracker: We lost N100m to postponement of election – INEC

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Saturday said it has lost N100m owing to the postponement of the Edo State governorship election by two weeks.

The Department of State Services and the police had insisted that INEC postpone the election, claiming that there were plans to disrupt the exercise.

According to INEC’s Deputy Director in charge of Voter Education and Publicity, Nick Dazang, all the officers mobilised for the exercise had been asked to return to their various units and offices.

While the ad hoc workers, who were recruited from the state, were asked to stay behind.

He also said hotels had been booked for officials to enable them perform their duties before the election was cancelled.

He said, “Also, we had moblised (before the cancellation). The cost implication of shifting the election would be huge. We are talking of more than N100m on the part of the commission.

“This is different from what the developmental partners have invested, the non-government organisations, media and others. The politicians have also invested in this election.

“For example, most of our personnel have returned to the headquarters, except the ad hoc workers who will stay back. Money paid to hotel is one of the cost we are losing. We have budgeted and paid for them. How do we get refund for most of these?”

The Director of Voter Education and Publicity, Oluwole Ozasse-Uzi said the commission would have to reconfigure over 6,000 card readers which he said would be an extra-cost.

“The card readers were configured for September 10. They have to be re-configured again. We have more than 6,000 card readers because there is at least one for each polling booth and unit. We also have some as back up. We get our funding from the government. We lost money running into millions of naira.

“We can’t do the election alone. The security agencies are part of us because they are to secure the materials and the people- the voters. We could have gone ahead, but if we did that and things went wrong, what will people say?

“We lost people in an attempt to conduct election in Rivers State. If we had proceeded, we would have been seen as an irresponsible organisation.

“We had only distributed non-sensitive materials such as erasers, pens, posters, bags, papers and ink but sensitive materials such as  ballot papers and result sheets had not been distributed,” he said.

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