Saturday’s House of Representatives supplementary election in Port Harcourt Federal Constituency in Rivers has been characterized by a low turnout of voters.
In units 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 of Ward 5 (Port Harcourt Township, elections commenced at 8:30 a.m., but as of 11:26 a.m., only a few voters had come out to cast their votes.
Polling Units 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, and 88 of the same ward also experienced a similar situation as voters came out in trickles to vote.
However, the election environment was peaceful and orderly, with the presence of the police and personnel of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) at the polling stations.
In Unit 44 Ward 5 opposite the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) office complex, the presiding officer, James Ar-Ibibbia, said no person had voted in the unit at 10:40 a.m.
The presiding officer of Unit 1, Jesse Kio, said voting commenced in the unit by 8:30 a.m., but only a few people had voted.
Some of the voters attributed the voter apathy to doubts over the transparent conduct of the elections.
The PDP agent in Unit 3 Ward 5, Micha Kalio, blamed the low turnout partly on the outcome of the February 25 and March 18 elections.
“Most people in the state are not even aware that the election is being held today,” he added.
Some opposition parties in the state, including the All Progressives Party (APC), boycotted the supplementary elections over the alleged lack of transparency by INEC at the gubernatorial elections.
Past elections in Rivers were marred by electoral violence, including the snatching of ballot boxes.
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