Low turnout of voters characterised Saturday’s governorship and House of Assembly elections across Kwara state,
As at 10:19 am, at the polling unit 012, Ile Oba, (Emirs palace) Ilorin metropolis, out of total registered voters of 826, only 65 voters had cast their votes.
Also at Gbabiabidu polling unit 002, Balogun Fulani Ward 3, in the Ilorin south local government area of the state, the ad-hoc staff interviewed confirmed that enthusiasm witnessed among electorate during last presidential and national assembly elections was absent
Some political leaders who spoke with Blueprint attributed the low turn out to performance of the various political parties in the last elections, they said that the voters had already presumed likely winner of the Saturday’s elections.
Others however, blamed the development on the militarization of the state.
Saraki blames apathy on militarization of the exercise
The senate president Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki has condemned the militarization of the Saturday’s governorship and state Houses of Assembly elections in Kwara state.
Saraki while speaking with newsmen after casting his vote alongside his wife Mrs Toyin Saraki, at Ode Opobiyi polling unit 005 Ajikobi ward in Ilorin West local government area blamed the low turnout of voters on the heavy deployment of military and other security operatives for the exercise.
He however commended the voters for their orderliness and peaceful conduct during the exercise.
The military and other security operatives had since Thursday engaged in show of force around strategic locations in Ilorin metropolis.
There was also the deployment of a military jet and helicopter to the state capital.
The Senate President, however, urged the Independent National Electoral Commission to strictly use the Card Readers for the exercise.
Process undemocratic- PDP campaign DG
A former Minister of National Planning Professor Abubakar Suleiman Olanrewaju, also joined Saraki in condemning the militarization of the exercise in the state.
Suleiman, while briefing journalists after casting his vote at Ode Opobiyi 005 polling unit, in Ilorin West local government described the process as undemocratic, pointing out that the military are driving away voters.
Suleiman, who is the Director General of the 2019 PDP Mandate Campaign Organization in Kwara state said this is not what Nigerians are yearning for, saying that any government that engage in such act would not last.
On the issue of Card Readers, Suleiman noted that there are still reports of malfunctioning of Card Readers in some of the polling units, urging the electoral umpire to ensure that the machines work perfectly.