June 19: We Are Ready For Kaduna By-election – INEC

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says it is ready to conduct the June 19 by-election for the Sabon Gari constituency seat in the Kaduna State House of Assembly.

The acting resident electoral commissioner in Kaduna, Awwal Mashi, gave the assurance at the stakeholders meeting on Tuesday.

Mr. Mashi explained that the by-election followed the vacancy declared for the seat of Aminu Shagali, the member representing Sabon Gari Constituency in the assembly.

The seat occupied by Mr Shagali, a former speaker of the assembly, was declared vacant in April after an accusation he absconded from activities of the assembly for more than 360 days.

The acting REC added that it had recruited 620 ad hoc staff, secured non-sensitive materials and funds disbursed regarding the election.

“Other issues that concern security have been addressed following a synergy with the relevant security agencies, and God’s willing, we shall have a hitch-free election.

“We are still expecting the sensitive materials from Abuja, which are expected to be on the ground on Thursday, two days to the election,’’ he said.

Mr Mashi explained that “the smart card reader would be used during the election,” noting that “the use of the card reader has had a positive impact” on the conduct of elections in Nigeria.

“Anyone that tries to snatch ballot boxes would be doing that at his own peril, as the security apparatus would be fully on ground to address any breach of the law,’’ he warned.

The election will hold in seven polling units in the local government, including Chika, Muchia, Jushin Waje, Hanwa, Dogarawa, Unguwan Gabas, and Zabi wards.

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INEC expects no fewer than 128,051 registered voters to participate in the election, for which five political parties are fielding candidates.

The political parties include the ruling All Progressives Congress, Peoples Democratic Party, People’s Redemption Party, African Democratic Congress, and Action Democratic Party.

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