Vote buying, multiple voting, late arrival mar governorship, state assembly elections
**No Money No Voting, says voters
Even with the presence of the Nigerian police, enough INEC ad hoc members yesterday, The Guardian can confirm that there were multiple voting in some of the poling units visited.
The Guardian discovered that the youths troupe out at about 12:45 after meeting with some of the party’s agents at various centre and emerged with multiple voter cards to exercise their franchise; they cast the first vote and wait for few minutes to cast another one.
One of the youths who came to vote multiple times including using a female voter’s card was confronted by The Guardian if will come back to the polling unit in 2023, he answered that he will not be in Nigeria when the next general election will be conducted.
The Guardian efforts to discourage multiple voting were futile as the security agents chose to do little to stop the action.
One of the INEC ad hoc members, who explained why they allowed a person to vote more than once using different PVCs said, “I can’t stop them from voting due to fear of attack, some of them have weapons on them and stopping them could be deadly, my people still need me, just as yours also need you, just let them vote as many times as they want.
Some youths who were seen playing football on the street said, they struggled to get voters card but can’t vote for anyone because INEC and the leading party know who will become the next governor, no money, no vote. We are without a job and giving us money will make us vote.
“I didn’t see anything so, there is no need to vote, we just queue in the sun to suffer ourselves, the presidential election was disappointing so I have no reason to vote again.”
Speaking on the low turnout, an Assistant Presiding Officer (APO) in PU 051, Afariogun, said, “I was here during the presidential election and I can say that today’s turnout is very poor. It could be due to the last election where ballot boxes were snatched here.
Meanwhile, some of the eligible voters with the PVC who refused to vote said they have lost faith in the electoral process and said they will not vote until electronic voting is ensured.
A resident of Afariogun, Oshodi, John Chuka who said the Presidential election got him disappointed said, “honestly, today I didn’t vote because I’ve lost confidence in the electoral system; a situation where ones vote doesn’t count, it doesn’t give one any joy so, you could see what happened the last time where ballot boxes were snatched and a lot of threat so, I decided not to vote thereafter. I am not happy not voting but it’s just that even if we vote it doesn’t count so, it’s just like using Bittles car that was produced in 1920 and asking me to be riding it, for me, it doesn’t work. Let us look for another thing we could do than wasting our time.
“The issue is not about whether a particular section of the country is threatened, it’s just that the system has given room for that. The issue of voting should be personal so, allow me to vote for who I want by giving me an improved system of electoral process.
They say, you people are coming from the east to vote. I can tell you, if you die in the process, its Sara (Waste); tell me how many people has been prosecuted. It’s just unfortunate that politics has divided us. I love Nigeria.
You can only convince me to vote if the electoral system has improve to the stage where I can vote with my mobile phone, where we can bypass party agents who doubled as vote buyers and ballot box snatcher; just give me access to vote for whoever I want.
On his part, Mr. Chukwuemeka J.C said, “Politicians are dividing us; for their selfish interest. We see people in the NASS collecting N30 million, N25 million and somebody working from 8a.m to 9p.m earning N30,000 and a man after been the governor for eight years, he still earn millions, change cars till the day he die. Those things is a discouragement to voters.
“I’ve been voting for forty years: I called out my neighbours and friends to go and vote during the presidential election but for what I witnessed during that election, I decided to sleep at home. I’m not voting anymore because it doesn’t count. I’m 61-year old and standing in the sun for these young ones to ridicule us, is uncalled for.”
Speaking with The Guardian on low voters turnout in the area, after casting his vote, the chairman of Oshodi/Isolo Local Government, Bolaji Muse-Ariyo, said, “we can’t put gun on peoples head to vote; we did a lot of awareness, publications but people still fail to come out. It’s just a pity that few people will decide the future of the majority, there is nothing we can do about that
“We just pray that the popular candidate will emerge. We are the ruling party in Lagos and we will rule Lagos for now and I believe that the state does not want to go back. There is development in Lagos which no state can match. Our federal location is not as much as the one in the north or in the Niger Delta but Lagos is making wave and
On multiple voting, he said, “there was an incident that happen somewhere in Mafoluku where some people are voting multiple times, we made arrest
On the electoral process, Ariyo said, “I have strong confidence in INEC, they are sincere, they are doing good job.”
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