Anambra State Governor, Chukwuma Charles Soludo, has commended the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for early commencement of the voting process in the state.
Soludo gave the commendation shortly after voting at Polling Unit 002 Ovuiyi Umueze, Isuofia, Aguata local council at 11:30am.
“From the information available to me, I have sampled views across the state and it seems to be going on fairly well in terms of deployment of logistics and early commencement of election. I think there is a great improvement compared to the previous election in terms of the arrival and deployment of materials. It seems to be going on well, relatively peaceful,” Soludo said.
The governor, who expressed optimism that the will of the people would prevail, also noted that the turnout of voters was low compared to the previous election.
He, however, noted that, “we expect the finishing, collation and announcement of results to end with a flourish.”
Meanwhile, despite some pockets of violence recorded in some areas in Ebonyi State, both the governorship candidates of the People Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Ifeanyi Odiii, and the All Progressives Congress (APC), Francis Nwifuru, also commended INEC for conducting a peaceful election.
Speaking to journalists after voting in his polling unit at Isu Onicha local council, Odii said even though there was low turnout of voters, INEC has to be commended for the manner the election was conducted.
Nwifuru and his wife, Uzoamaka, voted in his Edukwu Okemini Polling Unit 002, Enyanwu Igwe Ward in Izzi local council of the state at exactly 9:22am.
Nwifuru, after casting his vote, hailed the peaceful conduct of the exercise.
He commended the electorate for coming out to vote even as he also applauded INEC for early commencement of the polls.
Also, the APC governorship candidate in Enugu State, Uche Nnaji, expressed satisfaction with the conduct of the election, noting that, “the exercise is working quite well.”
He also boasted that he would emerge the winner of the governorship election in the state.
He spoke after casting his vote at Agwashi 015 Polling Unit in Akpugo in Nkanu West local council.
Nnaji, who was accompanied by APC chieftains, including the South-East APC National Vice Chairman, Dr. Ijeomah Arodiogbu, as well as the Zonal Organising Secretary, Dozie Ikedife, described the process as smooth.
He said: “The exercise is working quite well. This time around it would not be business as usual. This is the first time in Enugu that there is a real contest and this is the first time since its creation as a party that the APC is keenly contesting all elections in Enugu. This time around, should the votes count, we are likely to win because this is the first time. Ndi Enugu at the grassroots are interested in who governs them and God willing I will emerge as governor.”
On his part, the Labour Party (LP) governorship candidate in Enugu State, Chijioke Edeoga, has alleged that there was disruption of voting process in some parts of the state.
He also disclosed that a supporter of the party in Uzo-Uwani was shot by armed thugs and was hospitalised.
Edeoga, who spoke to journalists after casting his vote in his Eha-Amufu ward, said there was a localised disruption of the voting process.
He alleged that more than 30 armed thugs were arrested in Isi-Uzo local council, noting that the security agencies were alive to their responsibilities.
He said: “Information we have received from across the state is that thugs, rogue police are attacking people, disrupting the voting process. Some of them are putting on fake military uniforms.
“These matters have been escalated; we have done what we are supposed to do, to inform the authorities.
“These reports have come from Enugu East, Enugu South, Enugu North, Uzo-Uwani and Nsukka local councils.
“Council chairmen are using thugs to disrupt the voting process. In several places, they are also inducing and intimidating voters.”
He, however, commended both the security agencies and INEC for their commitment to peaceful polls, adding: “INEC is trying but its commitment is being undermined by state actors who are hell-bent on sabotaging the process. But we hope that at the end of the day, Enugu people will get the change they yearned for.”
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