The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says it will engage no fewer than 20,000 personnel for the conduct of Nov.18 governorship election in Anambra.
The Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in the state, Dr Nkwachukwu Orji, disclosed this at the commencement of a two-day workshop for the Civil Society Situation Room on Thursday in Awka.
Nkwachukwu said that the workshop was to equip civil societies to know their roles during the election, adding that the commission had commenced training of the personnel.
He said that the workshop was targeted at providing platform for the societies to interface with INEC management to look at previous elections and making effective plans for the successful conduct of the next election.
He revealed that 35 candidates from various registered political parties would contest the governorship poll, but said that some of the parties conducted their primaries without the presence of INEC officials.
Nkwachukwu said that some possible factors that may constitute challenges for the smooth conduct of the election, and but assured that the commission was working hard to address such issues.
Earlier, the Executive Director, Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre (PLAC), Mr Clement Nwankwo, described the Anambra election as crucial and appealed for cooperation of all for its success.
Nwankwo said that the election would not only serve as a test-run to the 2019 general elections, but would send a signal on the advancement of the nation’s democracy.
The director used the opportunity to caution on the deployment of the military in the South-East and during the election, saying “such might scare the electorate from freely exercising their franchise.’’
“Even though there are threats to disrupt the election, there is also no reason for the military to be deployed during the election in Anambra, because it will obviously scare away voters from participating in the exercise,’’ he said.
He expressed confidence in the ability of INEC to organise a credible, free and fair election in Anambra.
Nwankwo advised civil society bodies to resist any attempt by politicians to compromise the electoral process, especially by rejecting any form of inducement.