Bayelsa Election: We Must Do Things Differently - President Jonathan
By Samuel Victor Akpan and Soibi Oruwari
Former President Goodluck Jonathan has expressed displeasure at the conduct of INEC during the ongoing governorship elections in Bayelsa state. He has also frowned at the conduct of Nigerians towards the elections.
Jonathan disclosed this on Saturday after casting his vote at his polling unit in Otuoke, Bayelsa state.
Jonathan noted that the root of the problem may be inward, and called for stakeholders to do things differently.
“You cannot be doing things awkwardly and expect the best,” said Jonathan. “I have never observed that in any African country.”
“No INEC officials to conduct elections, no security personnel to manage the elections, no single observer that I met here, even the voters were not here.”
“So we Nigerians must begin to look inward and ask ourselves, what is our problem? Can we begin to do things properly? For you to score goals in a soccer match, you must also play well. You cannot expect to play anyhow you like and expect to score goals.”
Elections are scheduled to start at 8 am in Nigeria. However, President Jonathan and his wife voted at about a few minutes to 12 pm on Saturday.
“Look at even this voting, I was here 8:19am, elections supposed to start 8am. I have led observation missions in so many other African countries, and we used to go there 30minutes before starting, and in our reports we indicate exactly when the vote starts because if you start after that time it’s an indictment for the electoral body.”
“So if our nation must develop, every citizen, not just about president, ministers and parliamentarians, no, everybody must do his work properly.”
“I’m a bit disappointed what I observed today compared to what I observed in other African countries”, remarked Jonathan.
Meanwhile, accreditation and voting started at about 10:45am in units 5, 8 in ward six and units 15, 16, 4, and 6 in ward five in Opolo and Bioboglo communities in Yenagoa Local Government Areas of the State when our Correspondent Soibi Oruwari visited the area.
He reported that voters turned out early to cast their votes but INEC ad-hoc staff and electoral materials were yet to arrive as at the time of this report.