The candidates of the 17 political parties contesting the October 10 governorship election in Ondo State are expected to sign a peace accord Tuesday next week, the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, has said.
According to him, the commission has recovered from the recent fire incident which destroyed over 5,000 smart card readers in its office in Akure, while sensitive materials for the exercise would arrive on Monday.
Yakubu told journalists during an interactive session held at INEC office in Akure that the commission was studying the incident of slow voting in Oredo Local Government Area of Edo State during the just-concluded election.
While Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN), is seeking re-election on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, Eyitayo Jegede (SAN), is the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party.
The INEC chairman also reiterated the need by the National Assembly for the establishment of Electoral Offences Commission and Tribunal.
He said, “We are aware of the violence involving supporters of political parties. We will meet with the traditional rulers over the issue of violence. I am also glad that the National Peace Committee under the leadership of our former Head of State, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar (retd.), is going to intervene by organising the signing of the peace accord, similar to what we did in Benin.
“That is why we have a representative of the NPC committee to do the preparatory work. The signing of the peace accord will take place on Tuesday, October 6, 2020, here in Akure.
“We have accomplished 12 of the 14 activities. This is exactly two weeks and two days to the election. Within the days remaining, there is exactly 16 days to the election. If we exclude the election day on Saturday October 10, we have 15 days. So we have two weeks, and a day to the election. The sensitive materials for the election are ready.
“The Central Bank of Nigeria will deliver them to the (Akure) branch. On Monday, October 5, the sensitive materials for the election will arrive. We lost all our smart card readers to the unfortunate fire incident.
“But let me say that we have fully recovered from that incident. We have enough smart card readers from the neighboring State of Oyo State. We are configuring and charging the card readers here in Akure.”
Yakubu told journalists to “expose vote buyers during election as there are people who want to compromise the integrity of the process. INEC will remain neutral.”