The European Centre for Electoral Support (ECES) said voters did not comply with COVID -19 guidelines on social distancing in some of the polling units during the Edo State governorship election on Saturday.
ECES observers specifically noted that voters in Ologbosere primary school, ward 4 with 40 units and other polling units they visited were not observing the COVID-19 guidelines as stipulated in the INEC policy.
Deputy Project Coordinator, Mr Wilson Manji, told journalists that although the voters were all wearing face masks, they did not maintain social distancing.
“So far the election is going smoothly and calm. We are at Ologbosere primary in Ikpoba-Okha local government area of the state.
“So far everything is peaceful and calm here. Just that the INEC staff just arrived at about 10 a.m. and accreditation and voting started at about 10.30 am instead of 8.30 am,” he said.
According to him, the polling officers came with hand sanitisers and thermometers to check the temperature of every voter.
On his part, the Head, INEC Voter Education, and Publicity, Timidi Wariowei, told newsmen at the INEC office in Benin that most of the polling units and voting points started voting at 8.30 am.
“But we are aware that there are some few isolated cases that started 9:00 am or after 9:00 am because of some issues they needed to sort out.
“From the reports we are getting, almost all the polling units have started voting,” he said.
Wariowei, however, said he observed that the voters were all wearing face masks but did not maintain social distancing.
According to Wariowei, before I left the polling units I visited, I educated the people on the need to adhere strictly to the COVID-19 regulations by maintaining social distancing for the safety of all.
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