No fewer than 17,000 persons would be recruited as ad-hoc staff by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) ahead of the October 10 governorship election in Ondo State.
According to the commission, the recruits comprised 15,000 corps members and 5,000 undergraduates of the federal higher institutions in the country.
Festus Okoye, INEC National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, disclosed this in Akure, the state capital at a workshop organised for journalists on Wednesday.
The commissioner said the commission would also engage civil servants and heads of tertiary institutions as collation and presiding officers, noting that the staff of the commission would not be part of the exercise.
Okoye said, “INEC will provide moral and policy guides for the election. We will deploy 17,000 ad-hoc staff, 15,000 of them will be corps members and students of higher institutions.
“No INEC staff will be engaged. But staff of parastatals, agencies, and commissions would be engaged as returning officers. No collation officer will come from the federal tertiary institutions in Ondo State. It is Nigerians that will conduct this election. The pandemic has not stopped from doing our work.”
The INEC commissioner, who stated that adequate preparation had been put in place to conduct credible elections in Edo and Ondo States in line with the COVID-19 protocol, also reiterated that the commission would not postpone the elections for whatever reason.
“Voters without face masks will not be allowed to vote on the election days. We urged the voters to cooperate with our officials and the security agents at the polling centres,” he added.