By Favour Goodness
Right Group, Int’l Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law has urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to cancel or relax timeline for accreditation of voters before voting over panic and fears characterising the Anambra state guber election.
A statement signed by Emeka Umeagbalasi and Barr Chidimma Udegbunam urged INEC to extend the general voting time to 5pm and flexible voting time depending on circumstances to 6pm.
The statement reads:
In view of the expected massive voter apathy in today’s Governorship Poll occasioned by state and non state actors’ organized violence and threats of same against Anambra voters, resulting in inflicting in them panics and fears, INEC must cancel or relax timeline for accreditation of voters before voting.
“That is to say that there shall be no deadline for voters to be accredited before voting. Voters must be allowed to be accredited once they arrive polling units and vote at once and be free to go after they have been accredited and allowed to vote.
“INEC must also extend the general voting time to 5pm and flexible voting time depending on circumstances to 6pm.
“The above advice of ours is occasioned by our latest finding that many, if not most willing voters are still gripped by intense panics and fears, mandatorily forcing them to make calls and other enquiries concerning the security and safety of their persons, polling booths and polling booths’ environments and routes to same.
“From our received calls and calculations, it may most likely take voter three to four hours for a potential voter to confirm his or her movement and voting security and safety from 8am in the morning to be reassured of same before venturing out to cast his or her vote.
“INEC must further ensure availability of polling units’ results sheets (FormEC8As) to be simultaneously made available along with ballot papers.
“Posted agents of the participating political parties must police or man and monitor same tightly and ensure that they are made available on time and results entered in them are not doctored or tempered with,” they added.