2011 elections in jeopardy –INEC boss

Acting Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Mr. Solomon Soyebi, yesterday painted a gloomy picture of the 2011 general elections, stressing that one of the greatest problems being faced was time.
He said the period was so short that the electoral body might not be able to meet up with the requirement for a smooth process.

Mr. Soyebi who stated this during the Public Hearing of the Senate Ad-Hoc Committee on Constitution Review and Electoral Act further said another possible impediment to the conduct of the 2011 elections was the absence of a new Electoral Law that would guide the election.

The INEC acting chairman also said that the commission required 400,000 staff and 120,000 polling units for the polls, adding that presently, the electoral body had only 97,000 electronically registered polling units.
According to Soyebi: “Another serious problem that would be created is the proposed independent candidacy. The independent candidacy would create logistic problems, like ballot papers and so on.

“A situation where over 200 people would file out for one post and you expect them to appear in one ballot paper would cause serious logistics problem. If it were to be so in the Anambra election, the result would not have been ready by now.
“INEC right now needs five million ballot papers for the 2011 election and it requires a minimum of five months to be prepared, particularly with the independent candidate.

It could be more. In fact we may even print booklet. We don’t have the time, we must be mindful of the time we have at hand.”
He also announced the resolve of INEC to register three more political parties owing to the present law that encouraged the registration of more parties once the applicants meet the condition for registration.
“If anybody knocks on our door at any time for registration and the party is qualified, we have to register it. Again, the law said that if any party applies for registration and is not registered after 30 days the party is deemed to have been registered,” he noted.

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  1. The Ag. Chairman INEC has shown lack of incompetent using time as an excuse. The last election was held in 2007 and even the ‘agbero’ know that another election will be held in 2011. Thus, what exactly is the acting Chairman saying. If he is not competent to act in acting capacity, let him resign.


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