Low Voter Turnout At Akwa Ibom Rerun Elections

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The rerun elections, held in four state constituencies in Akwa Ibom on Saturday, witnessed a low turnout of voters, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.
The rerun in Etinan, Ibesikpo/Asutan, Ikot Ekpene/Obot Akara and Oron constituencies was ordered by the Court of Appeal, sitting in Abuja, in its judgment on appeals stemming from 2015 election petitions.
As at 9.30 a.m., less than 30 voters were seen on the queue, out of the 400 voters registered to cast their ballot at Methodist Secondary School, Nto Ndang, in Obot Akara Local Government Area.
At the polling centre of Abia Akpo, Unit 6, Ward 2, in Obot/Akara Local Government Area, the voter turnout was also unimpressive, with less than 40 voters, out of 411 registered voters, on the queue as at 10.30 a.m.
The Presiding Officer, Miss Abioye Abiola, said that the election materials arrived late at the polling centre, adding that voter accreditation could, therefore, not commence on time.
At the polling unit in Sacred School, Ikwen, Unit 8, Ward 3, voter accreditation started around 9.30 a.m. but the turnout was also low, as only 20 voters, out of over 400 registered voters, were seen on queue.
In Ibesikpo/Asutan Local Government Area, less than 30 voters were seen on queue at St. Paul Primary School, Mbikpong, polling unit as at 9.45 a.m.
Speaking with NAN, Mrs Uduak Stephen, an electoral officer, said that the seeming voter apathy could be attributed to the people’s fear of insecurity.
Besides, Stephen, a corps member, said that some voters might not have enough motivation to partake in the exercise, while others could feel that their votes would not count.
All the same, NAN reports that there was heavy presence of security personnel in all the polling units visited, while no single security breach was recorded. (NAN)

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