By Francis Igata
The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, on Tuesday, slammed the Police High Command and the Department of State Security Services, DSS, for not consulting the Commission on the perceived security threats before going public with a call for the postponement of the Edo State governorship election last week.
The Commission lamented that it might cost it another N200 million to cover up for the logistics that had been deployed before the cancellation.
INEC National Commissioner for Voter Education/Publicity, Prince Solomon Soyebi, made the revelation during a Channel TV breakfast show yesterday.
According to Soyebi, “we had dispatched over 90% of our personnel and non-sensitive materials to all the RACS. What was remaining were the sensitive materials which are the ballot papers and result sheets deposited in CBN vaults. Police and DSS did not consult the Commission before coming up with the advice which was a spoiler.
The commission never even had a representative at the meeting where the plan to issue the advice was hatched. We noticed reduced security presence when we requested the DIG in charge of zone 5 and DSS to escort us to CBN where we will dispatch the sensitive materials.
“The moment we had that advice as they called it, we just discovered that there was a decrease in security activities in the state. The advice they issued which was a spoiler caused parents to withdraw their wards who were mainly NYSC members to come home.”
“The environment was poisoned with uncertainty arising from that security report telling us to shift the election. So we had no choice at all because the person who is supposed to protect the environment says there is no guarantee of safety.
So, there was no sense in going ahead. We tried to find out what was their reason; they said we couldn’t share it with the commission because it is a security matter.