The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Thursday said roughly 95 million people have registered to vote in the 2023 general election in Nigeria.

The INEC chairman – Mahmood Yakubu – disclosed this at an election security management training in Abuja organized by the Nigeria Police Force for the police and other security personnel.

Yakubu said the figure was 20 million higher than the combined voter population of the 14 other West African countries, adding that election preparations, deployment and implementation constituted the most extensive mobilisation that could happen in a country in peacetime or wartime.

“In Nigeria, it involves the recruitment and training of staff and managing, the logistics for their deployment to 176,846 polling units spread across 8,809 electoral wards, 774 local areas and 37 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT),” Yakubu said. “It also involves a projected voter population of about 95 million for the 2023 general election, which is over 20 million more than the combined voter population of the other 14 countries in West Africa.”

The INEC boss also added that: “voters will also elect candidates for 1,491 constituencies (1 presidential constituency, 28 governorship elections, 109 senatorial districts, 360 federal constituencies and 993 state assembly seats.”

Ensuring the safety and security of voters, election personnel and materials, candidates, party agents, observers, the media and transporters was paramount, he said, acknowledging that the responsibility had become more challenging in the context of the current security situation in the country.

Yakubu expressed happiness that the police, as the lead agency in election security, had once again demonstrated its leadership role by convening the workshop.

He said with about seven months to the general election, there was time for proactive measures to be put in place to ensure the entire country was secured for the election to hold without hitch.

He expressed confidence that the workshop would also focus on deepening the capacity of the security personnel to imbibe the global standard of election security management.

“Already, the commission, under the auspices of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES), has produced and periodically revised the code of conduct and rules of engagement for security personnel on electoral duty,” Yakubu said. “In the next few weeks, the code of conduct as well as our training manuals will be revised to align them with the provisions of the Electoral Act 2022.”

He added: “And to consolidate on the professionalism displayed by the security agencies in the recent off-cycle elections. We will also intensify our cascade training for security personnel ahead of the 2023 General Election.”

Yakubu assured the inspector-general of police, heads of other security agencies and all members of ICCES that INEC would continue to work in synergy with them to ensure a safe and secure environment for the 2023 general election.

“It is a critical election and we must all continue to work together to protect the will of the Nigerian people.”


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