Adibe Emenyonu in Benin City
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has postponed the scheduled Saturday September 10 governorship election in Edo state for twenty days.
It will now take place on Wednesday, September 28.
Making the pronouncement at about 7.55 pm on Thursday, INEC National Commissioner in charge of Voter Education and Publicity, Solomon Soyebi, at the commission state headquarters in Benin City, attributed the postponement to alleged security threat raised by the Police and Department of State Security Service.
According to him, “At about 6.00pm today, we received official communication from the Police and DDS drawing our attention to the need to postpone the Edo governorship elections. Such a postponement, the communication indicates, it is necessary in view of threats of terrorist activities in Edo and other states of the federation during the election and over Sallah period.”
The deployment of security personnel countrywide to secure lives and property would outstretch their capacity to at the same time provide adequate security for the elections.
“Consequently, the commission notes the request of the security agencies and, considering the security implications of proceeding with the election, the safety of eligible voters, electoral officials, including ad-hoc staff, and other stakeholders, has decided to reschedule the governorship election to Wednesday, 28 September, 2016.
“The commission enjoins all eligible voters in Edo state, political parties, candidates and other stakeholders to be peaceful and law abiding”.
Reacting, Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State kicked against postponement of the governorship election for two weeks, fearing that it may clash with the planned coronation of Oba of Benin fixed for September 26.