Kaduna LG polls: I don’t care if APC loses or wins – El-Rufai

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election cancelled in 2 LGs over violence

As Kaduna State made history on Saturday as the first to introduce electronic voting in Nigeria, Governor Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai has said that he does not care whether his party wins in the local government elections or not.

The Governor hinged the temporary itches experienced during the Saturday local government polls on last minutes denial of card readers by Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

El-Rufai who spoke while addressing newsmen after casting his vote at Ungwan Sarki also announced cancellation of elections in Jabba and Kaura local government areas due to violence that broke out in some of the polling units in the areas.

He said if INEC had briefed the state earlier about the card readers, the state would have included that in the design of electronic voting machine (EVM).

He however said he was satisfied with election process so far, though he regretted the violence in Jabba and Kaura believing to be the stronghold of the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

“The process has been smooth. I had reports that, two out of the 23 local government would be rescheduled by the electoral body. We envisaged there was going to be crisis there because PDP believes that is their stronghold.

“I came here and got accredited and casted my vote. Unfortunately, INEC denied us card reader so we have to do manual accreditation. The whole voting process was less than 10 seconds.

“I was told there was initial itches with the code and was sorted out and everything now going on smoothly. I think it is a very good process.

“Like I said, if we had know INEC would not give us card reader, we would have included that in the design of the machine since it was possible to do that. But we were assured by INEC that they will give us card reader until the last minutes.”

Commenting on the election, a former Commissioner for LG and Chairman, Zone II, PDP, Shehu Giant described the process at Angwan Sarki as good.

“I have been to other places where we received a lot of complaints whereby machines were not taken to polling units and so on. But here in Kaduna North, where I cast my vote, I can testify there is no any itch,” said Giant.

Meanwhile, our correspondent who monitored the election in parts of Igabi, Kaduna North, Kaduna South, Chikun and Kajuru local government areas, all in Kaduna Central Senatorial District reported that the process was generally peaceful, even tough late arrival of materials almost marred the polls.

Also in Kaduna South Senatorial District, reports said, early morning downpour caused delay of the election process, while the exercise was general peaceful in Kaduna North Senatorial District.

However, APC Senator representing Kaduna Central, Shehu Sani described the whole election process as a drama.

Senator Sani on his Facebook wall said, “The Local Government election about to commence in Kaduna is nothing but a charade.Its a comical drama scripted, produced and directed by the state Government. If APC members cannot get justice from APC Government, what is a non APC member expecting?

He added that, “The election will go the way of the ‘APC ward congresses’, writing list in HOTEL ROOMS and announcing winners. Shame.”

Meanwhile, as at the time of filing this report, results from the various local governments were being awaited.

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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