In a bid to make the Osun gubernatorial election successful, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) said it would deploy 16,000 staff for the conduct of Osun governorship election on Sept. 22.
INEC Chairman, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, disclosed this on YIAGA Africa “Watching The Vote” (WTV) Series with the theme “Ending the Scourge of Vote Buying and Selling in Nigerian Elections.’’
Yakubu said the commission would ensure that citizens votes count in the Osun gubernatorial election, stressing that, INEC is only interested in the processes of the election and not in the outcome.
“The deployment of ICT has enhanced openness and transparency, we have come this far, votes count and will continue to count and votes will continue to be the determinant of who wins an election.
“So, now we are confronted with another challenge as a commission and that is the menace of vote buying, we have said over and over that it is a challenge and a shame on our electoral system.
“INEC will rise to this challenge just as we have risen to previous challenges in our electoral processes and am very sure that we will overcome.
“The problem is hydra- headed, therefore will require a number of approaches involving all stakeholders, INEC, security agents, political parties, civil society, media and the citizens to come together to address this challenge.’’ Yakubu said.
The INEC boss said that the commission would move to curb vote buying by first addressing the issue of violations at polling units.
He said that the commission would use the Osun governorship election coming up in the next eight days to actually make a statement against vote buying.
He said the commission would make it in a way that it would not be possible for voters to expose their ballot papers to agents with a view to exchange it for money.