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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Ondo State on Wednesday said it had identified and deleted names of dead persons from the state’s voter registers in its preparation for the general election.

This was disclosed by the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in state, Rufus Akeji at a press briefing in Akure, the Ondo State capital he said that INEC had already displayed the list of registered voters in all the 18 local government areas of the state.

According to him, the total of 1, 828, 219 were registered in the state and further reiterated that a total of 398, 958 Permanant Voters’ Cards (PVC) were yet to be collected.

“This exercise (display of register of voters) was carried out in this state in the last qaurter of the year 2018.

“Quite a number of claims raised during the exercise were treatd and names of dead persons that are still in the register were identified for deletion.

“The statistics of PVC distribution in the state as at 2nd January 2019 is a total number of registered voters – 1,828,219 and a total of uncollected PVCs in the state are 398,958”.

Akeju, who spoke through Assistant Director, Voter Education, Mrs. Yemi Oguntuase, explained that a total of 41 senatoral contestants, 96 federal constituency contestants, 326 will be participating in the 2019 general elections exercise in Ondo state.

He added that both the Presidential and National Assembly election and that of the State Assembly will hold in 3,007 polling units of the state on the February 16, and March 2, 2019.

The REC, however, stated that INEC was fully prepared for the elections stressing that the electoral unmpire with the Inter-Agency Consultatives Committee on Election Security had been working to ensure a peaceful, credible, free and fair 2019 election.

He stated that the members of the National Youth Service Corps would be constituting bulk of Ad-hoc staff that would be deployed for the poll due to existing MoU between INEC and NYSC.

The Smart Card Readers, Accoding to the REC, will be used during the general election in order to confirm that the PVC presented by the voter is genuinely issued the INEC and to also verify if the holder is truley the bonafide owner.

Mr. Akeju also disclosed that INEC had always have zero tolerance for “voting buying”, and noted there will be banning and restrictions on the use of smart phones in the voting cubicles.

“We are reviewing the administraton of polling units to enhance secrecy of vote by locatng the voting cubicle outside the galre of party agents.

“We are also enhancing the ability of visually impaired person to votes without assistance and addressing abuses in the process of assisted voting for non-literates voters who will be requesting such assistance to protect the secrecy of their vote”.

“So, we shall be collaborating with security and other law enforcement agencies on monitoring, arrest and investigation and prosecution of the offenders to put and end to brazen act, especially within the vicinity of our polling units” he said.

He later noted that the commission was trying its best to educates and sensitize the electorates including major stakeholders in the electoral process of the state on the need to eschew violence in the February 16 and March 2, 2019 elections.

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By Roving

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