W3vina.COM Free Wordpress Themes Joomla Templates Best Wordpress Themes Premium Wordpress Themes Top Best Wordpress Themes 2012

Two Councils Ruled out of Adamawa By-election, Says INEC

Attahiru-Jega

Attahiru-Jega

Maha, Mubi north, Mubi south named as flash
points
Ag. Gov assures displaced persons
Chuks Okocha in Abuja and Daji Sani in Yola
Ahead of Saturday’s governorship by-election in
Adamawa State, the Independent National
Electoral Commission (INEC) said tuesday that
there would be no election in two local
government areas in the state due to violence.
The two local government areas — Madagali and
Michika — are believed to still be under the control
of the violent Islamic sect, Boko Haram, which has
been terrorising the north-eastern part of the
country.
Apart from Madagali and Michika, INEC also said
there was “constant state of fear, insurgency,
thuggery, violence and ballot box snatching” in
Maha, Mubi North and South local government
areas.
Already, INEC Chairman, Professor Attahiru Jega,
is in Yola, the state capital, to assess the situation
in the state. Both sensitive and non-sensitive
materials for the election are expected to be sent
to the state before Friday.
INEC Director of Voters’ Education and Publicity
(VEP), Oluwole
Osaze-Uzzi, who confirmed this yesterday to
THISDAY, attributed the commission’s decision to
the increased violence in the two local
governments in question, but refused to state
how this would affect the outcome of the
election.
“Anything can affect the result of the election but
we cannot determine that until after the election.
The constitution is clear on this,” he added.
Adamawa State has 21 local government areas
and to emerge as governor, the constitution says
the candidate, in addition to securing the highest
number of votes cast in the election, shall score
not less than one-quarter of all the votes cast in
at least two-thirds of all the local government
areas of the state.
However, INEC expressed joy that people who
deserted their homes in the wake of the violence
and other security challenges in the three local
government areas are returning home.
The Nigerian armed forces are still battling to
dislodge members of the Boko Haram sect who
have annexed some communities in the state.
Last Monday, about 71 members of the sect were
killed in a gun battle with the military.
Seven political parties and their candidates have
been cleared to participate in the election, which
is aimed at replacing the impeached governor of
the state, Admiral Murtala Nyako.
One of the candidates in the election, the acting
governor, Alhaji Umaru Fintirin, is from Madagali
council area, and if the election does not take
place in his council area, not only would he lose
home-base support, he may not even be able to
vote for himself.
A total of 1.5 million registered voters are
expected to cast their votes in 2,609 polling units
in the state.
But in an attempt to ensure that the insecurity in
Michika and Madagali councils does not
disenfranchise the electorate in the two local
government areas, Fintiri has disclosed that
efforts are being made to ensure that the 40,000
Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from the two
council areas displaced by Boko Haram insurgents
cast their votes in Yola, the state capital, during
the by-election.
The acting governor made the disclosure while
addressing thousands of IDPs who paid him a
visit at the Government House in Yola as he noted
that modalities would be put in place by INEC to
enable those taking refuge in Yola, to cast their
votes.
Fintiri noted that he would prefer that the
displaced persons cast their votes in Yola as he
asserted that over 60 per cent of the IDPs are
resident in Yola and would be less burdensome
for the electoral body and the electorate in terms
of proximity.
He further revealed that there has been relative
improvement in the security situation in the two
council areas, adding that the IDPs would not be
denied their rights to vote in the coming by-
election.
“I have created confidence in them for the past
eight years as their former representative in the
Adamawa State House of Assembly and l still
intend to sustain the confidence by making sure
that they are not disenfranchised in the coming
by-election of the state,” he said.
He also declared that the state and the federal
government are in solidarity with them, as
reflected in the relative breakthrough
experienced by Nigerian troops in the fight
against the insurgents in recent times.
“The government is in touch with security
agencies in the state and are keeping the state
government abreast of the breakthrough in the
war-torn areas of Madagali, Gulak, Michika and
their environs and still awaiting the update on the
recent situation,” he said.
The acting governor described their plight as
disturbing, but added that the government would
make sure that the security agencies expedite
action towards making sure that they returned
home given the dislodgement of the insurgents by
the Nigerian troops.
Fintiri also disclosed that all necessary relief
materials were distributed to all the displaced
persons in their respective places where they are
presently taking refuge as he realised that over 40
per cent of the displaced persons in the two
council areas are resident in Yola, the state
capital.

%d bloggers like this: