President Muhammadu Buhari said he has given the Independent National Electoral Commission the required resources for the smooth conduct of the 2023 elections.
On this basis, the President said he would not entertain any excuses from the electoral umpire on the basis of funds shortage.
“I made sure they were given all the resources they asked for because I don’t want any excuses that they were denied funds by the government,” Buhari said in response to a question on INEC’s readiness for the 2023 elections at an interactive session titled, ‘A conversation with President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria’ in Washington DC, on Friday, December 16, 2022.
According to a statement signed on Saturday by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, the event was co-hosted by the United State Institute of Peace, the International Republican Institute, the National Endowment for Democracy, and the International Foundation for Electoral Systems.
The statement is titled At USIP, President Buhari says Nigeria’s agricultural revolution created over 13m jobs in seven years.
Buhari said INEC is ready “because I made sure they were given all the resources they asked because I don’t want any excuses that they were denied funds by the government.”
Meanwhile, INEC has ruled out possible postponement of the 2023 general election in Nigeria, adding that it has required resources for the smooth conduct of polls.
The INEC Head of Operations in Gombe, Aminu Isah, made this disclosure on Saturday during an engagement with youth-focused groups in the North-East, with the theme, ‘Making your votes count; Consolidating democracy.’
Our correspondent reports that the engagement was part of the Commission’s drive to sensitise youths, especially corps members, religious and civil society groups.
Isah revealed that, unlike in the past, INEC had received the needed resources that would smoothen the electoral processes.
“The 2023 elections will be the best election to be conducted from inception. INEC has gotten all its funds ahead of the elections. There will not be any possible postponement of 2023 elections, unlike the 2019,” he said.
On Permanent Voters Card collection, he revealed that collection had commenced in earnest, saying, “All the states have received the last tranche of the printed PVCs for those that registered.”
Also speaking, the Gombe State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Ibrahim Umar, who represented the National Commissioner in charge of Taraba, Gombe and Adamawa states, Dr. Baba Bila, said the Commission had received non-sensitive materials and some sensitive materials in readiness of the elections.
Bila said the youth population constituted over 50 per cent in the country, stressing that their involvement was important.
He said, “INEC is fully prepared to conduct a free, fair, timely and all-inclusive election come 2023. The Head of Operations has already told you that most of the non-sensitive materials, we have already received them, and among the sensitive materials, we have received the full complement of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System. By the grace of God, we are not going to have any hitches.”
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