Edo 2020: Sorting, counting of votes start, COVID-19 guidelines breached

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Voters in Edo

Sorting and counting of votes in Saturday’s September 19 Edo governorship election has begun in parts of Edo Central Senatorial District.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) also reports that some other parts in the state have concluded voting.

At Central Primary School, Ubiaja, Esan South East Local Government Ward 6, units 1 to 5, counting had been concluded in some units and results have been declared.

At Central Primary school, Emu, Esan South East Local Government Area, Ward 5, sorting and counting were ongoing as at the time of filing this report.

Similar situation was observed at Ward 2 Unit 8, Ikeken in Esan South East Local Government Area of Edo.

NAN further reports that the process was generally peaceful in all the wards visited.

In another development the European Centre for Electoral Support (ECES), on Saturday said voters in Ologbosere primary school, ward 4 with 40 units and other polling units they visited were not observing the COVID-19 guidelines as stipulated in the INEC policy.

Mr. Wilson Manji, the deputy project coordinator, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), that although the voters were all wearing face masks but they did not maintain social distancing.

“So far the election is going smoothly and calm. We are at Ologbosere primary in Ikpoba-Okha local government area of the state.

“So far everything is peaceful and calm here. Just that the INEC staff just arrived at about 10a.m. and accreditation and voting started at about 10.30a.m. Instead of 8.30a.m,” he said.

According to him, the polling officers came with hand sanitizers’ and thermometers to check the temperature of every voter.

On his part, the Head, INEC Voter Education and Publicity, Timidi Wariowei, told newsmen at INEC office in Benin that most of the polling units and voting points started voting at 8.30a.m.

“But we are aware that there are some few isolated cases that started 9.a.m. or after 9.a.m. because of some issues they needed to sort out.

“From the reports we are getting, almost all the polling units have started voting,” he said.

Wariowei, however, said he observed that the voters were all wearing face masks but did not maintain social distancing.

According to Wariowei, before I left the polling units I visited, I educated the people on the need to adhere strictly to the COVID-19 regulations by maintaining social distancing for the safety of al. (NAN)

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