Governor Fayemi expressed satisfaction with the conduct of Saturday’s presidential and National Assembly elections.
Shortly after casting his ballot at the Ogilolo Unit, Isan-Ekiti, where his wife, Erelu Fayemi, also voted, Fayemi said: “In my voting unit, everything has been relatively smooth; the card reader worked perfectly, the process was smooth, the officials were disciplined and the voters were orderly in their conduct.”
The governor said going by the reports he had received from across the state, he believed that things are okay.
“There have been a few reports of card reader not working in a number of points across the state, but I believe INEC is trying to correct those incidents of card reader malfunction. We are not at the end of the process yet; it would be too hasty to give 100% pass mark to the electoral management body, but for us here in Isan Ekiti, my village where I voted, I think things have gone relatively smoothly,” he said.
On the postponement of the exercise last week, Fayemi said believed that INEC had learnt its lesson and had done “relatively well in its conduct.”
He called on all Nigerians to support efforts geared towards strengthening national institutions.
Fayemi said: “I believe we all have a duty to strengthen our institutions. We must be careful not to dismiss at every opportunity efforts made at the level of institutions responsible for this process. I think what happened last Saturday was something most Nigerians were unhappy about, but if it enables INEC to address their own shortcomings to improve on the system and to ensure that the votes of our people actually count, then we will have cause to give INEC pass mark and democracy a positive progress marking in our country.”
Accreditation and voting started early in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, on Saturday. As early as 7:55 am when Nigeria Tribune got to Ward 2 Unit 8, Ado-Ekiti, scores of voters were already on the ground, lined up and taking an initial briefing from ad-hoc staff, and voting commenced seamlessly shortly afterwards.
At Ward 9, Unit 18, Ado-Ekiti, however, INEC ad-hoc staff were still being expected as at 8:24 at a time that voting had already been underway in most areas of the capital.
Voters were seen in their numbers sitting and hanging around; just awaiting electoral materials.
The exercise was also smoothly at Oye-Ekiti, Imojo, Itaji, Ayede-Ekiti, and Isan-Ekiti, Governor Fayemi’s town.
Generally, contrary to the tension created by the shoot-on-sight order from the president on would-ballot box snatchers, the towns were not under any form of military siege. In fact, soldiers were not sighted on the streets, and even policemen that were seen were courteous and professional.
In Imojo, Itaji, Ayede-Ekiti, Ifaki-Ekiti and other towns on the route to Isan-Ekiti, there were practically no military or police presence.
Governor Fayemi and his wife cast their ballots at 11.24 am