Professor Mahmood Yakubu, Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC indicates that the electoral process is being challenged by the Covid 19 pandemic.
He mentioned that some safety measures would be enforced to protect election officials, the voters and other stakeholders in the electoral process.
The use of face masks is mandatory for all involved in the election process and must be worn at all election locations.
“The Commission shall provide face masks for all election officials; and Alcohol-based hand sanitizers will be provided for election officials at the polling units.
“Methylated Spirit and cotton wool will be provided for the disinfection of the Smart Card Readers (SCRs) after the fingerprint of each voter is read.
“The rules of physical distancing shall be enforced at all election activities including stakeholder engagements, training, queuing at Polling Units, amongst others.”
Professor Yakubu also stated that:
“The Commission shall work with the PTF and health authorities to have in place a system of voluntary COVID-19 testing for INEC staff before and after deploying for elections” .
He went on further to say that INEC would also team up with health authorities in the states and the presidential task force on COVID 19 to implement a protocol to address any persons who show symptoms of COVID 19 at any designated election venue.
“Where an election official, a voter or any other person present at an election venue shows symptoms of COVID-19”
“The prevailing protocol shall be observed; the person must be isolated from other persons at the venue; the attention of the security personnel should be drawn;
“The dedicated number for COVID – 19 emergencies shall be called; and, if the affected person is an election official, the Commission must be notified through the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC)”