The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has reassured of the safety of members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) during the 2023 General Election.
Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, the INEC Chairman, said this when he received the Director -General, the NYSC, Brig.-Gen. Yusha’u Ahmed on a courtesy visit to his office on Thursday in Abuja.
Yakubu said that INEC placed great priority on the the comfort, safety and security of the NYSC members.
He said that over the years INEC had continued to work with NYSC to improve the comfort of the corps members during engaged in election duties.
Yakubu said that the commission had also been working with security agencies to ensure the security of corps members during election.
He assured that no NYSC members would be abandoned at polling unit after election as INEC was making contact with members of transport union to ensure that all corps members were safely return to their base after the election.
Yakubu also said that INEC had already made arrangements with NYSC to train corps members in their camps across the country.
He said that the INEC was already working on its schedule with NYSC for the training of the corps members across the country, saying that those in Enugu and Kano would be trained before leaving camps.
“We assure that we will continue to implement the terms of the MOU we signed with the NYSC,” he said.
Yakubu added that INEC would continue to work very closely with NYSC in the conduct of all election.
“The reality around the world is that no electoral management body conduct elections on the strength of its staff members. All electoral commissions engage ad hoc or temporary staff for election.
“But we are extremely fortunate in Nigeria to have this large poll of young, knowledgeable and patriotic Nigerians in all parts of the country, engaging in important national assignments that when the election comes they support in the conduct of the elections in the country.
“I can’t see how the commission can conduct elections without the involvement of NYSC. It simply unimaginable that we can conduct elections without the NYSC,” he said.
Earlier, Ahmed said that the NYSC would strive hard to ensure that the terms of the MoU between the two agencies were implemented to the letter.
He said that the NYSC was already sensitizing corps members on the importance of participating in the election.
“You know there are a lot of fears. This will happen that will happen, but we try to be very clear with them. It is a duty and a responsibility for them to actually do their best and take responsibility.
“Tomorrow they will be proud that they are part of the puzzle of the growth and the development of democracy in this country,” he said.
Ahmed commended the INEC chairman for agreeing to improve the welfare of the corps members, saying that would go a long way to motivate them.
He said that INEC’s constant reassurance of security for NYSC corps members had continued to give them the confidence to participate in the election.
“On our part, we will continue to also sensitize them that they are actually secured and everything possible will be done to make sure that nothing happened to them on the course of their duties.”
On the training corps members in camps, he urged INEC to ensure that of Enugu and Kano States that were outstanding were done before they leave camps.
“Yes INEC has promised to train these corps members in the camp. That has been done.
“But I think there’s a problem in Kano and Enugu states, the training is yet to take place. Maybe something would be done to ensure that its take place,” he said.
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