- PDP raises alarm over alleged harassment of its governors
- As fear of kidnapping grips journalists
Records at the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), indicate that no fewer than 1.72 million persons are eligible to vote in the Sept. 19, Edo governorship polls while 483,796 eligible voters will not participate.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that an INEC document titled “Delimitation of Edo State”, shows that the ineligible voters in Edo is on account of failure to collect their Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs).
The consolidated figure of registered voters in the state as at August 2018 stands at 2,210,534 registered voters, while only 1,726,738 collected their PVCs, the document indicates.
The document shows that Edo has 18 Local Government Areas, with 192 Wards and 2,627 polling units.
A further breakdown of the registered voters figure in the document shows that the male accounts for 1,159,325 (representing 52 per cent), while 1,051,209 are female (or 48 percent).
Similarly, from the total registered voters, the youth (18 – 35 years) account for 50 per cent (1,105,338); Middle Aged (36 – 50 years) account for 29.1 per cent (643,551); and Elderly (51 – 70 years) has 15.99 per cent (353,508).
Eligible voters classified as the Old (70 years and above) account for 4.89 per cent (108,137).
Further distribution of registered voters in the three senatorial districts of the state shows that Edo South has the highest figure of 1,281,414: the North with 564,122: and Central senatorial district has 364,998.
NAN reports that Edo South has seven council areas; the North has six while Central has five Local Government Areas.
According to the number of collected PVCs, Oredo zone has 240,197; Ikpoba-Okha is 214,882; Egor has 158,817; Etsako West has 128,188 and Akoko Edo with 115,343.
In another development, the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP) has raised alarm over alleged harassment of governors elected on its platform.
Addressing journalists in an emergency press conference, national chairman of the party, Prince Uche Secondus said while Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo state and the deputy senate President, Ovie IMO-Agege were chilling in the Benin home of Adams Oshiomhole, PDP governors were being harassed in the Edo state capital.
Secondus said: “Hope Uzodinma and Ovie Omo-Agege are in the home of the former chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC. Oshiomhole. PDP governors are being harassed in Westend Hotel, Benin.
“Policemen have surrounded the hotel and their lives are in danger. We call on Inspector General of Police to ask the police to leave the place because their lives are in danger. If APC governors are in Benin, the PDP governors should be in Benin too. Our governors would remain in Benin, no one can intimidate us.
“We are bringing this to the attention of the international community. Elections must be free. Elections must be allowed to hold. You cannot allow APC governors in Edo, and bar PDP governors,” he said.
Meanwhile, there is anxiety among journalists covering the Edo governorship election for fear of kidnaps along the Benin -Auchi road and the interior roads in Edo Central senatorial district.
The roads have been notorious for kidnapping and journalists fear that because of the election, there would be fewer police checkpoints as they have all been deployed for election duties.
To forestall such, some of the journalists in Edo have agreed that the way out is to move in convoy.
A reporter with a national medium said “The situation is frightful because along the Hartman farm where kidnapping has been will not be manned because of the election. The way out is for us to move in convoy to reduce the tension”