By Olawale Ibrahim, Lokoja
Kogi State Resident Electoral Commission (REC), Professor James Apam has expressed optimism that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), is prepared for rescheduled Saturday General elections.
Professor Apam who was speaking during a Stakeholders meeting at Hope Confluence Hotel in Lokoja on Wednesday, said the commission is fully prepared to conduct free, fair and credible election
“INEC is prepared, we have received additional materials and in fact we are still expecting some this evening, we have configured the smart card readers and we will mobilise to the field as scheduled,” the REC said .
While reacting to allegations of fake corps members, the Resident Electoral Commissioner said that there cannot be fake corps members, saying that the commission has posted corps members to the polling units, there is no way anybody can take their duty from them they will conduct the election and report back to us.
On postponement, Professor Apam he said even the meeting they have just had is part of that effort to sensitized them and we will still go to the radio.
The meeting is about telling people about the preparation that has been made , we have talked about things that needed to be done that have been done. We have also told the agents to be at the central Bank tomorrow to witness the distribution of the materials.
The REC also appealed to Politicians to play the game by it rules ,adding that the police had challenged the politicians that they are the ones recruiting the thugs, it is an appeal to them to also play their role in ensuring that there is no violence.
“The people should challenge us by maintaining peace and see what we would do”.
On the accusation from the Lokoja PDP that the REC is colluding with the Governor to compromise the election. It depends on what they mean. What was the point of conniving.
“The rumour is going round that NYSC kits are being made available for fake corps members she expressed the fear of their being kidnapped and replaced by those corps members. I am actually not happy that APC is.not here, I expected all the politicians to be here. Governor Yahaya Bello has been good to the NYSC I don’t have any Personal problem with Governor Yahaya Bello, he is my friend, he is my brother. So I am not speaking against him but I expected that the APC would have been here because this election is among all the political parties for them to hear what we are saying.
“Also we found that the mats that were given to corps members at the Registration Area Centre were not enough, if mats are going to he given to corps members let mats go round to all. I have mattresses in the camp if INEC is ready to mobilize the carrying of those mattresses to some places I am ready to release the mattresses free of charge.”
The Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), said there should be no fear of corps members being used to conduct elections, saying there is no way they would just come and take over to conduct elections as they would not know how to use the card readers as they are not trained for that. There is no way.
“I want to also remind the party leaders and their agents to come to the Central Bank 9o’clock in the morning so they can inspect the materials before we released them to the electoral officers, the ones returned they can inspect them plus the new ones.”