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Bayelsa rerun fixed for January 9, 2016


-INEC meets with security chiefs, parties

THE Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has fixed January 9, next year for the supplementary election of the Southern Ijaw Local Council cancelled by the body recently.

Impeccable multi sources within the Commission told The Guardian yesterday that the tentative date being canvassed by top officials and stakeholders seems to be widely acceptable to all the principal actors in the election saga.

“Apart from the fact that the yuletide period is around the corner, consideration was given to the fact that a lot of people would return home to their villages and they wouldn’t want to be bogged down with the inconveniences of the election.

The commission wants to consult with the various stake holders and needs time to prepare for the make or mar re-run,” one of the sources said.

In order to perform its duty, Yakubu was said to have decided to carry everybody along and involve all concerned in widespread consultations.

The electoral boss, alongside his top lieutenants yesterday, met with security chiefs in the area including the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Sanusi Oki, his Army counterpart, Major General Alali Okunola and those of the Naval, Air Force and Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps.

The security situation during the recent election was discussed at the meeting, while plans were laid out to prevent a recurrence of the lapses recorded in the last poll.

The INEC boss is set to meet with all the parties that participated in the last election, together with all the candidates on Thursday in Abuja.

“They are expected to come to the meeting with all their grievances and those present are also expected to thrash all the issues exhaustively,” another source revealed.

“The chairman has been consulting widely and he wants to carry along all the stakeholders, regardless of their status or affiliations.”

It shall be the turn of the media and civil societies groups on Friday, during which INEC is expected to announce the date for the bye-election.

“INEC is trying to ensure that it shakes off the under-performance tag that is being attached to it. The boss wants to be seen as being fair and effective.

“After the Kogi near-disaster, he can’t afford to have another misstep in this one. His integrity and that of the commission are at stake here,” a source said.

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