By Kehinde Ayantunji
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Friday explained that the commission directive to ban smart phone or electoral devices only applicable to voting cubicles to prevent vote buying and selling.
The commission explained that the last directive of the INEC Chairman Professor Mamud Yakub during the last stakeholders meeting recently held in Osogbo was not to entirely banned recording devices at the polling centre but to prevent snaping of ballot papers at the voting point.
Osun Resident Electoral Commissioner, (REC) Olusegun Agabje, at press conference said it is important to clarify the misleading reports not to create unnecessary confusion at the polling centres during tomorrow election.
Agbaje said “the directive of INEC is that voters will not be allowed to enter the voting cubicles with smart phone or any other electronic recording devices to prevent evidence of vote buying and selling”.
” Our experience have established that voters are snaping their ballot paper as evidence to get paid for voting political parties. The commodification of votes is disturbing and embarrassing and INEC is working hard to curb it. It is criminal and violates the secrecy of voting.”.
“It is not true that INEC is entirely banning recording devices from the polling centres, that would have also violated the principle of transparency, the process is open and such recordings have been helping the commission to effectively monitor the process, what is against the law and the rule of the commission is snapping of ballot papers and vote buying.”
He added that transacting votes as commodity is punishable under section 124 and section 125 of the electoral act and urged the media to assist the commission in curbing vote buying describing it as global embarrasment to Nigeria.
He assured the people of the state that the commission has prepared necessary arrangement to ensure the smooth conduct of the election.