The just concluded supplementary election in Anambra State was characterized by a very low voters’ turnout, the Nigeria Civil Society Election Situation Room, an election monitoring group, has said.
The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, on Sunday, declared Willie Obiano of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, the winner of the supplementary gubernatorial election in the state.
Mr. Obiano polled 180,178 votes to emerge winner, followed by Tony Nwoye of the Peoples’ Democratic Party, PDP, with 97,700 votes; and Chris Ngige of the All Progressives Congress, APC, with 95,963 votes.
In a statement on Sunday, the Situation Room, an INEC-accredited election monitor, noted that although the election was peaceful and electoral materials were distributed in a timely manner, there was very low voter turnout.
In several polling units across the 16 local governments where the election was held, turnout was as low as five per cent, the group noted.
“Reports received by the Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room from our field observers indicate a low voter turnout,” the group said.
“For instance in Ifite Agbaja PU 022, Idemili North L.G.A, 980 voters were registered but only 64 voters got accredited and 59 people voted.
“Also in Chukwura Primary School l PU 006, 382 voters were registered and only 24 were accredited.
“In Inland town PU 007,Onitsha North L.G.A, 484 voters were registered and only 34 were accredited. Furthermore, in Okija Hall l and ll Onitsha South LGA, total registered voters are 818 and 784 while accredited voters were 120 and 84 respectively,” the group said.
The group also noted that election officials were deployed in sufficient numbers to the polling units.
“However in Chukwura Primary School l and School ll PU 006 and 007 and in most polling units, we received reports that chairs and tables were not provided by INEC for Election officials.
“Our observers noted heavy deployment of security agents in sufficient numbers in most polling units, and that these officers and men conducted themselves in a professional and commendable manner,” the group also said.
“The election was peaceful, but voter turnout was very low, as low as 5% in several of the polling units that Situation Room observed.
“With only a few polling units set to vote today, it is understandable why the usual problems of logistics was limited in today’s poll,” the group added.
Though the group did not state the reason for the low turnout, observers believe it was because of the decision of the major opposition candidates to boycott the election.
The APC, Labour Party, and PDP candidate, Tony Nwoye, boycotted the supplementary election and asked their supporters to do same. They demanded the total cancellation of the November 16 poll