Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, who is in charge of INEC, says that the commission will need 100,000 trucks and 4,200 people to get election materials to the 176,846 polling places in 2023.
The chairman said that Navy gunboats would go with the ships to keep the cargo and crew safe.
Yakubu spoke Wednesday in Abuja at the event where INEC and the Road Transport and Marine Workers’ Unions signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).
He said, “Today’s signing of a revised MoU with the road and marine transport unions shows that we are committed to putting into action key recommendations from the review to improve forward and reverse logistics in our election operations.”
“For the 2023 general election, more than a million people and a huge amount of materials will be sent twice within two weeks from our state offices to 774 local government areas, 8,809 electoral wards, and 176,846 polling units all over our country. It will take more than 100,000 cars and trucks and about 4,200 boats, along with naval gunboats.
“This is a huge job that needs to be done in the next 66 days, and we are determined to do it so that Nigerians can vote in peace.”
“I want to reassure Nigerians that all polling stations across the country will open at 8.30 a.m. on Saturday, February 25, 2023, for the Presidential and National Assembly elections, and on Saturday, March 11, 2023, for the governorship and State House of Assembly elections.”
He also said, “The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) needs a lot of vehicles, like motorcycles, tricycles, boats, and canoes in riverine areas, that it can’t get from its own resources. This is so that people and materials will be at the polling units on Election Day waiting for voters, not the other way around.” Because of this, the commission and the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) signed the first MoU in January 2015.
“The MoU was changed in December 2018 to include the Nigerian Association of Road Transport Owners so that we could have more service providers to meet the needs of the growing number of vehicles (NARTO). Over the years, the commission has come to rely on its partnership with the NURTW and NARTO to provide vehicles for moving election workers and materials.
“However, we didn’t include the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) in the scope of the MoU. This has made it hard to get people and things to and from the country’s riverine areas. This mistake has now been fixed by the revised MoU, which adds MWUN, which is made up of sailors, dockworkers, and people in similar jobs, to the planning and delivery of our electoral logistics.