Paul Orude, Bauchi
Bauchi State Independent Electoral Commission (BASIEC) has begun distribution of all sensitive materials ahead of Saturday local government election in the state.
Speaking while flagging off the materials distribution exercise in Bauchi Thursday, the State Electoral Commissioner, Alhaji Dahiru Tata disclosed that arrangements had been completed for the smooth and safe delivery of election materials to designated local government areas of the state.
Tata said that the materials would be distributed to all the 20 Local Government area in the state today (Friday).
“These sensitive materials are ballot papers and results sheets. We have finished distributing the non senstitive materials so they are going to tackle them to the respective local government and they are also going to distribute to all the 323 wards in the state according to number of polling units in each ward,” he said.
On security arrangement to ensure that the sensitive materials get to their destination, Tata disclosed that agents of the participating political parties came with the security agents to pick the materials.
“You can see that police is everywhere and I am sure by the time they get to the local government security agents are also waiting for them”
On measures taken by the Commission to protect voters and officials from COVID-19, he said, BASIEC has produced over 20, 000 face masks.
“We produced these face mask for everybody, each presiding officer poll clerk as well as supervisor. We are also providing hand sanitizer to each deak in the units,” he said.
Tata disclosed that Bauchi State has a total of 2.4 million registered voters
“It is a conbtinous exercise and evn right INEC is registering people. So Bauchi State has at least 2.4 million registered voters,” he said.
The BASIEC Chairman said he is optimistic of conducting a feee, fair and credible election dethe fact that the last council election in the state was 12 years ago. far
“Everybody is happy that we are going to do it. By tomorrow (Friday) all the campaign will end and by then things will be smooth.
“We do our things transparently. We started with stakeholders meeting, we gave them time table, we also gave them guidelines for the conduct of the election. So far there is no problem”
Tata said that 10 local observers and two foreign observers have been accredited for the election.
He said that 19, 000 ad hoc staff has been recruited for the election saying all their allowances have been paid.
The BASIEC Chairman commended the support of security operatives and all stakeholders towards the conduct of smooth local government elections in the state, and urged them to sustain the tempo.