NAF to airlift personnel, materials for voter registration in Borno councils
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has asked the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) for assistance to airlift personnel and materials to Bama, Chibok, Danbua, Gwoza and Kala Balge local government areas of Bornu State as the nationwide Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) exercise gets underway.
Chairman of the Commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, who led a team of senior officials to the Defence Headquarters in Abuja, told the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar that the request was informed by intelligence report that the roads leading to the five local government areas have been manned by the retreating insurgents.
A statement by Chief Press Secretary to INEC, Rotimi Lawrence Oyekanmi quoted Yakubu as saying that the commission was embarking on a very significant exercise in the history of this country and as such citizens would be afforded the opportunity to register as voters all year round in the 774 local government areas across the country for the first time since the democratic dispensation.
“We have mobilized in all the states of the federation, including the northeast region, where our military is very active for obvious reasons. But since the return of peace to Bornu State, a lot of Nigerians in the Internally Displaced Camps (IDPs) before and during the last general elections have returned to their towns and villages.
“Our intention is that no Nigerian should be left out of this registration exercise. Every Nigerian counts and every Nigerian should be given the opportunity to register.
“But we are equally interested in the security of our personnel and materials, especially in the northeast. We have a challenge in Danbua, Chibok, Gwoza, Bama and Kala Balge council areas.
“And the challenge is not in the local government offices, but in the roads leading there. We have been reliably informed that the insurgents have, in some instances, manned these roads. We are all aware of the incident that happened last week involving some of our very senior officers,” the statement added.