Ondo election marred by vote buying, low compliance with COVID-19 protocol – Yiaga Africa

Ondo election marred by vote buying, low compliance with COVID-19 protocol – Yiaga Africa

Yiaga Africa, a civil society organisation, says the Ondo State governorship election was marred with by buying and inadequate compliance with Covid-19 protocols.


Dr Aisha Abdullahi, Co-chair, Yiaga Africa 2020 Ondo Election Observation Mission, said this on Saturday at a press conference on the situational report on the election.


Abdulahi, however, commended INEC for early arrival of election materials to polling units which witnessed large turnout of voters.


She said that her organisation received reports of vote buying from Akure South, Ose, Ondo West, Ilaje and Akure North Local Government Areas (LGAS), with the secrecy of the ballot being compromised in some instances.


“Despite attempts by polling officials to prevent voters and party agents from showing how ballot papers were marked, these electoral offences occurred in the presence of security personnel who made no attempt, in some cases, to reprimand the culprits,” she said.


She also decried that there was minimum observation of COVID-19 social distancing protocol across all the polling units under observation.


Abdulahi, however, noted that at the commencement of polls, compliance with INEC COVID-19 protocol on the two-tier queuing system in 88 per cent of the polling units, the presence of infrared thermometer and disinfectants/sanitizers in 74 per cent of polling units that were observed.


She said that in assessing the responsiveness of the electoral process to the needs of persons with disabilities, Yiaga Africa tracked the presence of disability-sensitive election materials with the presence of the Braille ballot guide in 59 per cent of the polling units.


Abdulahi also noted that there were magnifying glasses in 27 per cent of the polling units, Forms EC 40H (PWD Voter information and statistics) in 93 per cent of the polling units and the PWD posters Form EC 30E in 90 per cent of polling units.


She conveyed the commendation of Yiaga Africa for the people of Ondo State for their peaceful conduct during the voting process and urged them to be patient and peaceful throughout the voting and vote counting processes.

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