Unprecedented numbers of enthusiastic voters have on Saturday thronged various polling units in different towns, villages and hamlets in Ekiti state to perform their civic rights in the ongoing governorship election.
Ruling All Progressives Congress, Peoples Democratic Party, Social Democratic Party and 13 other political parties are jostling to produce the next governor of Ekiti State in today’s election.
The other parties include;
Accord Party, African Action Congress, African Democratic Congress, Action Democratic Party, All Progressives Grand Alliance, Allied Peoples Movement, Action Peoples Party, Labour Party, New Nigeria People’s Party, National Rescue Movement, Peoples Redemption Party, Young Progressives Party and Zenith Labour Party.
Data from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) suggest that Ekiti has a total of 988,923 registered voters.
The exercise is scheduled to hold in 2,445 polling units across 177 registration areas in 16 local government areas of the state.
Sixteen political parties are represented in the contest for the next governor of the state when incumbent Governor Kayode Fayemi completes his second term in office later in October.
Security Of Lives And Properties
Meanwhile, there were combined security personnel on the ground to protect the lives and property in different parts of the state and as well their presence was noticed at both far and near the polling centres.
At the Ekiti office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), there was heavy presence of security agents to forestall any eventuality.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), while on monitoring of the polling units, report that security agents arrived many polling units as early as 7.20 a.m.
Aside the police, other security agencies and outfits providing security, include Civil Defence Corps, National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and men of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC).
At some of the border towns linking Ekiti with other states, military men were strategically stationed with officers and men, keeping vigil and conducting search on vehicle owners and occupants.
The restriction placed on human and vehicular movement during election was strictly obeyed by residents and travellers alike, as most inter-township roads were empty.
This development compelled many voters to trek long distances to their polling units, as there were no taxi or commercial motorcycle operators to convey them.
Besides, all markets, shops and eateries were under lock and key.
The election commences four days after candidates in the Ekiti State governorship election signed a Peace Accord ahead of the poll.
They signed the Peace Accord at an event held in Ado-Ekiti under the auspices of the National Peace Committee (NPC) led by a former Head of State General Abdulsalami Abubakar (GCFR), who was represented by Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Most Rev. Matthew Hassan Kukah.
The accord was signed by the eleven candidates vying for ..
During the event, the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Prof. Mahmood Yakubu expressed gratitude to the NPC for the initiative, saying it has been fruitful.