Thugs have stolen BIVAS machines meant for the presidential, senatorial and house of representatives elections in parts Delta and Katsina.

The Chairman of Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC Prof Mahmood Yakubu disclosed this at the national collation centre today Saturday February 25.

Yakubu said: “Some of the challenges identified thus far include inability to commence polls on time in many polling units citing logistics bottlenecks and insecurity.

In Alawa, Shiroro, Niger state bandits activities made it impossible to go on early but election activities have started having dealt with the security concern. Also in Oshimili local government, Delta where two BIVAS were whisked away and Safana local government, in Katsina were 6 BIVAS were stolen by thugs but were replaced to continue the process.

Other problem according to Yakubu is the shortage of tags for polling agent by political parties. INEC chairman said: “1.5 millions tags were printed for party agents at the polling units level. 68 thousand collation tags at the wards, LG and state levels while 27 tags for agents were accredited to cover the National Collation Centre. Hence, if their is any issue it is not from INEC but the various political parties for not doing the needful within the specified time the portal was opened”.

In Abia and Imo also, deployment is taking place late to the polling units he added assuring that all voters on the queue before 2:30pm will be permitted to vote no matter how long it takes.

In Imo state, Okigwe, Osu, Orlu and Oguta local governments, INEC acknowledged having to contend with insecurity but security agencies have been able to bring the situation under control promising that no voter in the state will be disenfranchised.

The periodic briefing of the nation as polls progress across the country is expected to continue intermittently by the chairman of the commission.

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