By Sunday Afolabi
The Resident Electoral Commissioner, Ekiti State, Dr Tella Adeniran has affirmed the readiness of the Commission to the conduct the 2022 gubernatorial election in the state come June 18th, this year.
Speaking with members of Online Media Practitioners in Ado Ekiti, Dr Adeniran, said the 2022 governorship election in Ekiti will involve sixteen registered political parties and that the election will take place throughout the sixteen Local Government Areas, in the state as well as the 177 registration areas that are called wards.
The REC said further that as part of preparation for the election, the Commission has embarked on sensitisation and enlightenment campaign, which has always been on continuous basis,adding that the Commission has met with the Civil Society Organisations and that they normally keep them abreast of the events in the Commission.
Adeniran highlighted further that they have made advocacy visit to some traditional rulers in the State and still have further plans to regularly meet the traditional rulers in the State at the monthly meeting of the Council which often hold every last Tuesday of the month.
He maintained that the Commission has embarked on expansion of voters access to polling units in recent times saying for almost twenty-five years now, between 1996 and 2021, the numbers of polling units in Nigeria remains the same despite the growth in the numbers of voting population over the years. According to him, this led to the creation of voting points and voting point settlements across the States of the Federation including the FCT.
The Ekiti INEC Commissioner said further that these voting points and voting point settlements later upgraded to full polling units across the country and this exercise brings the total polling units in Ekiti to 2,445, and that the State has additional 250 polling units in the former existing one.
Adeniran said besides the expansion of voters access to polling units, the Commission engages in the devolution of CVR to RAS by moving the Continous Voters Registeration to Residents Areas which is going to commence on March 8th, 2022 and ends on 14th March same year. He said to drive these points home, the relevant stakeholders meeting always come up and they always address issues concerning the Commission officially.
The REC said the Commission has also introduced New innovations and few of them include, submission and processing of nomination forms and other applications, therefore the following activities are now conducted either partially or entirely online. Voters pre- registration, nomination of candidates for election by political parties, accreditation of National and International observers for elections, registration of media organizations for elections and submission of lists of polling and polling agents by political parties.
He said further that part of the activities of the Commission is the CVR which Is still on going throughout the State and is meant for the following people. Those who have just turned 18 years and above but for one reason or the other, they could not register in the past, those who want to update the information on their PVC, those who want to engage in inter and intra state transfer, those who have defaced PVC and all sort of manner of change will use the opportunity to bring back their PVC to acceptable standard. .
Speaking on behalf of all members, the State Chairman of Online Media Practitioners in Ekiti and Chairman, Federated Chapel of Nigeria Union of Journalists, Ekiti State Council, Comrade Ayodele Abere, told the Commission that the body has always been very supportive in the previous election by ensuring that every information emanating from any of its members, is authentic and verifiable. Adding that the body would work more closely with the INEC this time around.