The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Ondo State says it is almost ready for the rescheduled presidential and National Assembly elections in the state slated for Saturday, February 23, 2019.
Rufus Akeju, the state Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), made the disclosure on Thursday at a briefing with newsmen on the readiness of the commission for the elections.
Akeju said the electoral body in the state was “98 per cent ready” for the elections, maintianing that the hitches that caused the postponement had been cleared.
The REC also said INEC in the state had retrieved the materials that would be deployed for Saturday's rescheduled election from the vault of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), noting that all stakeholders in the electoral process were on hand to monitor its distribution.
"I can tell you that in Ondo State, we are more than 98 per cent ready to hold the Saturday election. Right now, we are faster because some of the materials have already been moved to the RAC centres,” he said.
He confirmed that the commission in Ondo State lost huge amounts of funds in deploying materials to the riverine axis of the state, before the elections were postponed.
He continued: "For us here, we are facing that one squarely because we lost a lot of money there. We had to make the move the first time they asked us to move. We (INEC) had to carry the people (ad hoc staff) across that water and also bring them back again, but now it is a huge loss.
"In fact, we signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and they met all the conditions we gave them. They even took all their vehicles to the VIO for inspection to truly certify that they are in good condition.”
Akeju, however, restated the commitment of the commission to ensure free, fair and credible elections.