The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) said on Monday that it will continue to work with relevant government agencies to ensure that vote-buying and other forms of voter bribery are kept to a bare minimum during elections.
Speaking about the vote-buying incident that occurred in some polling units in Ekiti during the governorship election last weekend, Rotimi Oyekanmi, the Chief Press Secretary to INEC Chairman Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, said it was heartwarming to see security agents, particularly men from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), apprehend some of the perpetrators.
Oyekanmi who said the proactive steps taken by the commission has greatly helped in curbing the menace however denied the claim that vote buying was rampant during the Ekiti election, saying it only took place in few polling units out of the entire 2,445 polling units across the state.
“I don’t agree with the notion that vote buying was “very rampant” during the just concluded Ekiti Governorship Election.
There are 2445 polling units across the 16 local governments in the state.
How many of them witnessed vote buying?”
“However, some vote buying and selling did take place.
The Commission took some proactive measures against vote buying in the past, which included banning the use of cell phones or photographic equipment in the polling booths, reconfiguring the booths and changing the position of the ballot boxes”.
“In addition, the Commission invited the EFCC and the ICPC to join the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES).
It was heartwarming to see some EFCC and Civil Defence officers move against voter buyers during the election”.
“The Commission will continue to do the needful to curb the Vice”.