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Late distribution of materials In Ebonyi state




Accreditation of voters did not take off on time yesterday due to late arrival of materials in most polling units as well as wrong placement of card readers.

In Ohaukwu local government council distribution of election materials was still going as at 10 am just as the INEC officials explained that the original result sheets were yet to get to the local government.

The Senior Polling Officer in charge of the area, Mr. Ngene Okorie explained that the delay in getting the material was due to efforts to ensure that the correct materials were sent to the designated stressing that card readers that malfunctioned were noticed to belong to polling units other than they were meant for.

In City Commercial School polling unit in Obiozara, Ohaozara local council, where the caretaker council chairman, Hon. Chaka Nweze, was billed to vote the card reader could not be activated all the while as many voters waited nonplussed at the failure.

In Enu Uburu in the same council area it was discovered that the card reader meant for polling unit 009 was sent by INEC officials to polling unit 007 and it took quite some time before this wrong placement could be identified for the right card reader to be sought.

In Okposi which is about the largest polling unit, INEC created an additional polling unit and the card readers performed efficiently.

There were sporadic shooting in the area on the eve of the election which the indigenes said were masterminded by political thugs loyal to one of the political parties as they targeted supporters of a relatively new political party in the state.

It was discovered that the thugs made their bold efforts at the intimidating voters following the shortage of police personnel in the whole of zone 6 police command.

Meanwhile Ebonyi State Governor, Martin Elechi, who cast his vote around 1.47 pm, noted the various hitches including mix up of result sheets, snatching of electoral material and temporary malfunction of card readers stressing that if the reports from other parts of the state are anything to go by, there are a lot of room for improvement.

Elechi disclosed that the exercise was peaceful in his Ikwo council area because the people did not react violently to the observed shortcomings adding that those minute mistakes about the card readers could be excused on the fact that Nigeria was using that technology for the first time.

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