From Aloysius Attah, Onitsha
The Saturday Anambra governorship election was characterised by low turnout, apathy and vote-buying by prospective party agents.
As expected, many people shied away from participating in the election owing to the prevailing atmosphere of insecurity and threat by the agitators during the pre-election period.
In most polling units visited in Onitsha, Nkpor, Obosi and Ogidi, most polling units with hundreds of registered voters didn’t record up to 20 per cent turnout. At Awada ward 9 polling unit 006, the total number of registered voters was 787, while the total number of votes cast at the end of the poll was 56. It was the same story at Awada Primary School polling unit 003 with 3798 registered voters, as at noon, those who voted had not exceeded 50.
Party agents also engaged in vote-buying wooing prospective voters with monetary offers while the INEC workers and security agents acted indifferently as they solicited for people.
At Christ the King Secondary School, (CKC) Onitsha where the reporter voted, APGA party agents used veiled methods to buy votes. While some kept shouting “Alert Governor”, another openly approached the reporter informing him that there is a prize waiting for him if he votes accordingly.
There were also reported malfunctioning of the Bi-modal Voter Accreditation System machines in at least two out of five polling centres visited across the communities in Anambra North senatorial zone.
But commenting on the general impression about the election, a chieftain of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Chinedu Romanus Eze (Yagazie) noted that there are no perfect electoral systems anywhere but predicted that APGA is already coasting home to victory.
Eze who is also an Executive Assistant to Governor Willie Obiano said that despite the low turnout of voters, those who came out demonstrated their resolve to go for continuity by electing Soludo of APGA as their next governor.