All is set for tomorrow’s governorship election in Ekiti State. The 15 political parties registered to participate in the election in the 16 local government areas by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) closed their campaigns last night.
Going by a regulation by the Electoral Act 2010, parties and candidates must wound up open campaigns 48 hours to the election.
The electoral umpire said that sensitive materials have been dispatched to its offices at the council areas ahead of the isolated election scheduled for 2,195 polling units across 177 wards.
According to a data obtained from the Ekiti State office of INEC, 35 contestants are jostling to replace Governor Ayodele Fayose at the Oke Ayoba Government House in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.
It said that 667,064 out of the 913, 334 eligible voters in the state collected their Permanent Voter Cards (PVC), leaving 246, 270 PVCs uncollected.
To ensure a free, credible and hitch-free poll, the Police deployed 30,000 of its men. They will be assisted by 4,390 security personnel, including soldiers and paramilitary officers.
Many have predicted the election as a straight battle between the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state and the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The PDP is fielding Fayose’s deputy Olusola Eleka and former Solid Mineral Development Minister Kayode Fayemi is APC’s standard-bearer at tomorrow’s poll.
Meanwhile, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in the state, Prof. Abdul Ganiy Olayinka Raji said that all the sensitive materials for the election has been delivered to all the 16 local government in the state.
Raji told reporters that the materials were collected at the Central Bank in the presence of all the political parties representatives
According to him, the materials were monitored directly in his office through official vehicle tracker connected to a giant television screen which indicates the movement of the materials until all got to the respective 16 local government headquarters of the state.
The commissioner also confirmed that Ekiti has 913,334 voters out of which 646, 000 collected their PV cards while about 250,000 are yet to collect their cards.
He explained that all the process used by the commission was transparent with the involvement of all the representatives
“We have 35 political parties participating in this coming, gubernatorial election, though 40 political parties initially notified us of their participation, at the last minutes only 35 parties are participating.
He explained that the commission did not face any challenges because the fear of how the sensitive materials will get to the final destination was addressed through improved technology that gave the commission to monitor, track and even listen to all the communication going on in all the vehicles deplored.
He explained that Ekiti is calm and all hands are on deck to conduct the credible, fair and free election in the state.