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INEC deploys 6,000 smart card readers for Ondo gov’ship election

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has confirmed the movement of no fewer than 6,000 smart card readers ahead of the governorship election in Ondo State.

This was made known on Thursday by Mr Festus Okoye, INECs National Commissioner, Information and Voter Education when he appeared at a News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) forum in Abuja.

According to Okoye, who was responding to questions on alternative plans by INEC, given the destruction of 5,141 smart cards readers in its Ondo office by a mysterious fire, the 6,000 smart card readers were ordered from the commission’s Oyo State office to Ondo for the smooth conduct of the Oct. 10, election.

He said; “As at today, we have given an order that all the smart card readers in Oyo state office should be moved to Ondo.

“And they have over 6,000 smart card readers in Oyo and so we are not going to have any problems reconfiguring them and using them for the elections.

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“The decision to move the smart card readers from other states to conduct the Ondo elections was taken because of the long duration required to purchase a smart card.

“The process of ordering one smart card reader takes at least six months, hence the decision to move smart card readers from other states.

Mr Okoye, however, said the commission was also looking at a more secured way of storing its smart card readers to avert any further destruction of the cards given the expensive nature of the cards.

“Because these smart card readers were bought with Nigeria’s taxpayers’ money we have a responsibility to make sure that we don’t waste the resources of this country.

“But we have recovered quickly and we are proceeding with the Ondo State election, noting will stop the conduct of that election,” Okoye concluded.

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