The Independent National Electoral Commission on Tuesday began its process of ensuring that there is adequate supply of fuel for its logistics for the 2023 general elections.
This was ad the commission highlighted how e unending fuel crisis nationwide puts the entire operations for the election at risk.
Commission boas Prof Mahmud Yakubu during a meeting with the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, listed how the company can ensure that the current complications being experienced by end users of petroleum products do not frustrate all the other plans INEC had put in place.
During the meeting, the INEC boss intimated the NNPC team led its boss, Mele Kyari of the state of preparations by the commission adding that the level of preparations would amount to nothing without adequate supply of fuel.
“Earlier this morning, we had a meeting with the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW). We are working with them as well as the Marine Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) to mobilise the vehicles and boats needed for the massive land and riverine movement of men and materials for the election. We are determined to overcome the perennial challenge of late commencement of polls on grounds of logistics.
“However, this objective cannot be fully accomplished without the guaranteed supply of petroleum products to facilitate the movement of vehicles and boats. Hence, in our effort to mobilise every national institution to give Nigerians a pleasant experience on Election Day, the Commission believes that the NNPC, as our national oil company, is one of the critical institutions that can facilitate the attainment of our objective. We are aware of the efforts of the NNPC to ease the current situation in earnest. At the same time, we would like to appeal to you to consider the following proposals,” Yakubu told Kyari
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He reminded the NNPC team that Nigerians will go to the polls in a little over three weeks in what will be our 7th consecutive General Election since the restoration of democracy in 1999.
“The election will hold in two phases. The national elections (Presidential and National Assembly) will hold on Saturday 25th February 2023 to be followed two weeks later by State elections (Governorship and States Houses of Assembly) on Saturday 11th March 2023,” he said
Enumerating why the Nigerian election requires such a huge and complex preparation, the INEC boss said election is the biggest logistical operation that Nigeria undertakes every four years.
He said there are “93,469,008 registered voters are expected to elect a President, 28 State Governors and 1,462 legislators (109 Senators, 360 members of House of Representatives and 993 members of State Houses of Assembly). The Commission is mobilising about 100,000 vehicles and 4,000 boats for the deployment of personnel and materials to 176,846 polling units spread across 8,809 Registration Areas (or electoral Wards) in 774 Local Government Areas nationwide.”
He said the use of the NNPC land and floating mega stations nationwide to service election duty vehicles and boats becomes imperative.
“We will bear the cost of the products. By doing so, there will be guaranteed supply for elections.”
He listed other suggestions as ways of mitigating any form of complications thus:
ii. A special arrangement with other marketers in locations where the NNPC may not have dedicated stations; and
iii. Consider other options to support our seamless operations on Election Day.
In his response, the NNCP boss assured the INEC boss that everything would be done to ensure that adequate supply of petroleum products is guarantteed before the election time.