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Large turnout, Late Arrival of materials, card-reader failure Mars Election


400_F_45146019_jkwBF0V3YmOlife653yntzhGTFUdwBbWThe General Election held in Anambra State yesterday, suffered set back due to late arrival of materials and card-reader failure although there was large turnout of electorates across the state.

A Guardian survey around the state shows that voters complained of late arrival of materials, characterized by late coming of the INEC officials in various polling centers including Akogoli square 11, Umudioka Ward 111, Amawbia Cenral School ward 1 and 11, Umuokpu ward 7, Nmini Ward 11 Nwafia, Enugu-Ukwu ward 1V and V, and Boys Secondary School, Nri Ward1.

While monitoring the election process in the 21 Local Government Areas of Anambra State, it was discovered that eligible voters gathered at the various polling booths as early as 8a.m on Saturday but could not do the accreditation process due to massive malfunctioning of the card reader.

Even it was also gathered that the machines were locked permanently, battery failure, etc, while INEC officials said they had already contacted headquarters in Awka for further instructions.

In most polling booths accreditation were not completed till 2pm, while actual voting started between 2.30 pm and 3.00 pm.

The Senatorial candidate for the PDP in Anambra Central, Mrs. Uche Ekwunife casted her votes about 3.30 pm at Boys Secondary School, Nri Ward 1 unit 002, while Sir Victor Umeh of APGA also vying for the same position voted at Aguluezigbo ward18 at 4 pm.

In his reaction, the Traditional Ruler of Enugwu-Ukwu, HRM Igwe Sir Ralph O. Ekpe called for total rejection or cancellation of the election, just as he advised INEC to go back to the drawing board and reschedule the election. Igwe Ekpe strongly warned that INEC is courting trouble for Nigeria which may lead to another crisis.

“If INEC continues in this way with the card reader not functioning properly, late arrival of election materials etc, it will not augur well for the country and may lead to a serious set back in our political process.

“I aspect INEC to say let us suspend this election, let us return to the manual system and reschedule the election for the next one week”, Igwe Ekpe who was not happy for not been properly accredited said.

Also in his reaction, HRH Igwe Chijioke Nwankwo of Nawfia, however, praised INEC for introducing the manual system which according to him, worked peacefully in his community.

Igwe Nwakwo, who praised INEC for doing a good job hoped that the election would be credible and also usher peace in the country.

Meanwhile, some groups of youths were seen playing football in school fields and open spaces in Awka, Onitsha, Nnewi, Ekwulobia across the state.

It was also gathered that all markets were shut, there was heavy vehicular and cyclists movements while few pedestrians were seen moving about.

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  • Iheonunekwu Joseph Nwabueze

    Where is guardian, punch, ThisDay, APC, Tinubu, and others who supported these failed machines: Please;

    Talking nonsense, INEC and JEGA knew that Card Readers will not work, instead of them to use what will work, they decided to scuttle the election, Nigerians are smart and have produced of 30-million graduates, they are watching. Let Tinubu and APC take note. Card Readers do not know APC or PDP, all will suffer it. I commend Tribune Newspaper, it was the only News paper that did side any political party.

    • Charleso

      We could not vote with card reader in Ikeja GRA, card reader did not work. Instead we all voted manually without filling any incident form. In a polling station of over one thousand voters only 181 people voted. how are we sure that the people that voted did not use the fake INEC cards. My anger is with INEC chairman for deprieving Millions of Nigerians from Voting when you know that we will later use manual accreditation and voting. The same senario happened in many parts of Lagos, in Alapere priimary School Lagos No Card reader was used. Shame to JEGA and all that requested for a technology that we know will not work in Nigeria Now.

      • Evans

        They knew that Card Reader would failed but because some selfish elements are behind the contract, they insisted in using a technology that is yet to be tested anywhere. The election that returned Obama to a second tenure in America was not done by card reader; the election that gave birth to the present prime minister of German was not conducted by card ready; Israeli did not use Card reader in the election they just concluded; no other African Nation has used card reader for election. Even in China where card reader was mass produced, it has never been used for any election. Why are we the first to spearhead the largely untested technology? Why did PDP’s warning on Card reader fell on deaf ears? Anyway, thank God there was a plan B (manual) on which to fall back on. Nigeria must make progress – Card Reader or no Card reader.

  • Maxx, Canada

    This Raph O. Ekpe should be reminded that no body should be talking about cancelling election at this time. It is in his best interest to guard the way he talks. Igwe or no Igwe would mean absolutely nothing at this time.

  • Clifford Iorpenda

    To cancelling election is to set the country backwarda. Mr Ekpe.