By Chiemeka Green, Yenagoa
The Independent National Electoral Commission in collaboration with the Nigeria Navy have commenced the profiling of all the marine boat owners contracted to ship the non sensitive materials for the Bayelsa governorship election to the various polling units in all the communities across the riverine areas of the state.
This was disclosed today by the Residential Electoral Commissioner for Bayelsa State, Pastor Monday Udoh during a press briefing held at the INEC state headquarters in Yenagoa.
The State REC also noted that Bayelsa State is 75 percent water hence it is always very difficult to conduct election as well as the movement of materials and election personnel.
Udoh further hinted that he was able to convince the national commission to allow us to run election for three day against two days in other states due to our peculiar nature.
He said, “Now, over one month to the election, we have concluded arrangements with boat owners and the supply of buses to the point that Navy is profiling them as we speak and what does profiling mean is that we want to know we is the owner of that boat and who is driving the boat for that day.
“Just yesterday, my legal departments were in line with them and they have signed on the agreement. In fact they have gone ahead to tell that if we are ready between 11th and 13th, they are going to ship all our non sensitive materials to the raths so that it could be close to the polling units.
“We have trained our adhoc staff about two weeks ahead of the election. Apart from that we have giving them cds and YouTube copies of the training so that even when they go home, they could be able to train themselves so that we want to up our game.
“INEC want this election to be exemplary in a way that it’s going to act as a catalyst for the 2023 between Kogi and Bayelsa State. Yesterday we had a meeting where the service commanders were here.
“We are tackling insecurity and on 1st of November, am going to be in Abuja with the IGP and other top ranks af the military and other security agencies to also talk more about the security, how we are going to escort our materials to where they are supposed to be to the extent we have enlisted the use of helicopters so that where we use to have so much problem or maybe so much time running on the sea, we have to airlift them to where they should be.
The REC stressed that INEC Bayelsa is interested and seriously working towards conducting a fair, free, credible and peaceful election come November 16, 2019, adding that the news that he conspired with the VC of Federal University, Otuoke to enlist APC members as SPOs is false and fragment of the imagination of authors of such news.
“We shall remain focused in achieving our mandate. We shall not be distracted by fake and false news being peddled against my humble self and INEC Bayelsa State. I want to state frantically, I have no contact with the Acting DVC of Otuoke either to recruit or to receive a list from him. So it is completely false and a fragment of the imagination of the authors of such news”, he emphasized.