2015: INEC creates additional 441 polling units in Ondo
ADDITIONAL 441 voting centres, carved from polling booths that have more than 500 voting strength, have been created out of the 3009 units in the 203 political wards of Ondo State, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Olusegun Agbaje disclosed yesterday.
The REC who spoke at a stakeholders meeting hosted by the State Police Commissioner, Isaacs Eke in preparation for next month’s general elections, said the creation of the new centres was done for ease of logistics during the exercise.
Agbaje, who assumed duties two weeks ago after the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) reshuffled its State Resident Electoral Commissioner across the country, assured a gathering of top security officials, community leaders and representatives of political parties and their candidates, that the electoral agency was ready to conduct a free and fair polling exercise.
While declaring the parley, which was also attended by the Chairman of the State Council of Traditional Rulers, Oba Adesimbo Kiladejo, the Osemawe of Ondo, open, Eke appealed to the politicians to play the rule according to the game and urged community leaders to ensure that there is peace during the exercise.
Eke also read the riot act to his officers and men against allowing themselves to be used by desperate politicians who may want to truncate the electoral wish of the majority of the people and he particularly warned those who are attached to prominent citizens and public office holders as security details, not to accompany them to vote on election day.
In his address to all the divisional heads and unit commanders, the police boss said that the command already has a mechanism in place to arrest any police officer that flouted the guidelines of election conduct and that appropriate sanctions would be meted out to them.
According to Eke, “the Ondo Police Command is ready to provide adequate security and an enabling environment for the forthcoming elections to hold. Security will also be provided for INEC officials including ad-hoc staff, party agents, safeguard sensitive and non-sensitive materials and escort same to various polling units and collation centres.
“I wish to implore political parties, politicians most especially those vying for elective offices in the state and federal legislatures to imbibe the spirit of sportsmanship during the campaigns and elections and shun acts of thuggery, intimidation on perceived opponents, snatching of ballot boxes and other electoral vices as the police will; not hesitate to deal with any person caught no matter how highly placed.”