Less than 48 hours to Saturday’s polls, sensitive election materials have been retrieved in Bayelsa State.

March 18: INEC Distributes Election Materials In Bayelsa
INEC Distributes Election Materials In Bayelsa

Immediately after taking them from the Central Bank of Nigeria’s branch in the state, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) commenced the distribution of the materials in the state.


INEC scheduled the 2023 governorship and house of assembly elections for Saturday, March 18.

However, only the State House of Assembly Election will be conducted in Bayelsa this weekend.


The governor of the state has not finished his 4-year term.

The Retrieval

The electoral commission on Thursday retrieved the election materials it kept with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).


Shortly after, it dispatched them to the Registration Area Centres (RACs) in the eight local government councils.

Reports say security personnel prevented journalists from entering the CBN premises in Yenagoa to witness the distribution process.

They only allowed party agents and some political actors in.

Addressing journalists at the apex bank’s gate, the Head of Voter Education and Publicity, INEC, Yenagoa office, Wilfred Ifogah, says they were at the CBN to retrieve the sensitive materials, comprising election result sheets and ballot papers for the House of Assembly polls.


The Distribution

He says that the materials are expected to arrive RACs accessible by road on Thursday.

Those for riverine areas, especially Southern Ijaw and Brass LGAs, would be taken to INEC head office in Yenagoa for onward movement on Friday to their RACs.


“We know in Bayelsa, we do not have a governorship election, so right now, we are moving the materials to the various local government headquarters so that the distribution can be early enough on Saturday.

“We have 24 constituencies in Bayelsa. Each of the local governments has three (constituencies) except Southern Ijaw, which has four, and Kolokuma/Opokuma with two.

Every necessary arrangement has been put in place.

“BVAS has been reconfigured for this particular election.

“So far so good, we are good to go,” Independent quoted Ifogah saying.

To ensure a smooth process, refresher training for the supervising presiding officers has been organised.

Also, the collation officers would receive training.

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He also says, “Just before today, we actually reviewed the election we had on the 25th (February) and we looked at some of the lapses and what actually caused them.

Breaking The Chain 

According to him, “we speak today, we are trying to break the chain.

“That is why we are moving our materials early enough so that they can go to the various local government headquarters, especially those on land.

“The result sheet of the State Assembly election also has a seal on it though the seal is different from that of the presidential election.

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“This is to prevent people that want to be funny, possibly want to compromise, from being able to do so, having seen that of the presidential.

“We don’t play with that at all, so we designed a different seal for this particular one”.


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