As Nigerians prepare, again, to go to the polls for the 2019 general elections, there are a number of rules and regulations the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) will have Nigerians strictly adhere to in order to make the forthcoming election a successful one.
As part of its public awareness campaign, the commission have revealed seven cardinal offenses that should not be committed anywhere around the polling units where Nigerians will cast their votes this Saturday.
These Offenses listed by the commission are as follow:
- No campaigning for votes, or persuasion of voters to not vote for a candidate.
- No shouting of slogans concerning the election, or in support of any party.
- No one should be in possession of an offensive weapon or wear any apparel calculated to intimidate voters.
- No one is allowed to use a vehicle bearing the colour or symbol of a political party or candidate
- No one is allowed to loiter at polling units without lawful excuse after voting or after being refused to vote.
- No one is allowed to snatch or destroy any election materials.
- No one is allowed to blare siren.
Though not included by INEC in its main list of offenses, mobile phones are prohibited inside the polling booths when a vote is being cast, but can be used around the polling units.
President Muhammadu Buhari revealed earlier this week that he’s instructed security agencies to be “ruthless” in dealing with ballot box snatchers, so you might want to stay safe by adhering to the rules guiding the election. However, Nigerians can report election offenses to the INEC situation room.
On each election day, according to INEC, polling stations will open for accreditation and voting from 8:00am to 2.00pm. Also note that voters on the queue before the close of poll at 2:00pm will be accredited and allowed to vote.
The Presidential and National Assembly elections that were initially supposed to take place on February 16 will now take place on February 23, while the Governorship and State House of Assembly elections initially scheduled for March 2 have been moved to March 9.