From Sule Aliyu, Bauchi
The 2023 Presidential and National Assembly elections commenced today in Bauchi State, with a reported massive turnout of voters in many parts of the state.
The Triumph monitored the situation in the Ningi, Bogoro, Toro and Bauchi Local Government Area and reports that accreditation and voting commenced in some polling units with massive turn out of electorates.
Voting materials arrived early at many polling centres though some areas were said to have experienced delay in the arrival of materials due to the wrong exchange of Bimodal Voters Accredited System (BVAS) machines. The exercise began at 8:30 a.m in some wards and polling units visited .
There was also heavy security operatives on ground in many of the polling units visited to forestall any breakdown of law and order.
.As of the time of filling this report there was no record of any eruption of violence, the voting process progressed peacefully.
At the Tifffi Guda Coalition center in Ningi LGA which has seven polling units attached to it, election materials were being distributed as early as 8.50 am, but voting was yet to commence.
A further visit to the Mucciya Polling unit in Ningi , accreditation and voting started as early as 9.30 am with voters being accredited with the BVAS.
The BVAS machine was working well without hitches to delay the ongoing exercise .
An APC Agent at the polling unit, Hamid Bala said that as early as 8.30 am, residents of the area converged at the Polling unit, adding that the voting process was going on peacefully as the machine was functional with voters being accredited and also voting immediately.
Similarly,electorates in Bogoro LGA came out to the various poling units to cast their votes.At some of poling units visited by Our Correspondent, both electorates and electoral officials were seen conducting themselves in orderly manner.
There was also massive turnout of voters at Boi polling Unit with code number 005 in Bogoro Local Government Area of Bauchi state . Electorates were sighted and ready to cast their vote at 7:25 amidst heavy security presence consisting mainly of Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and the police.
Also ,our Correspondent observed that as at 7:59 a.m at Pada polling unit with code number 03, Tilde Fulani in Toro Local Government Area, the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) personnel were setting up the polling unit with every necessary materials for the voting exercise readily available.
Electorates consisting both male and females were sighted on the queue and eagerly waiting to cast their votes for their choice of candidates.
At the Dan’iya Hardo Ward of Bauchi Local Government which comprises of both Old and New Government Reserved Area (GRAs), there was no presence of INEC officials nor voting materials as at 8:30 am.
When visited Sa’adu Zungur Primary School IV polling unit, Winniee ‘A’ polling unit as well as Sa’adu Zungur Primary School III and V polling units, only a few voters were seen waiting for the INEC officials while there were no traces of security personnel.
In Bakari Dukku Collation Centre where sensitive materials were being distributed around 8:40 a.m, observed that all the officials to be deployed to the Dan’iya Hardo Ward were still in the Collation Centre collecting their election materials with heavy presence of security personnel.
When approached, one of the officials who did not want his name mentioned but said he was to serve as Assistant Presiding Officer (APO1), explained that they were still waiting for the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) to be given as well as transportation allowance before leaving the Collation Centre.