The Chairman of Benue State Independent Electoral Commission (BSIEC), Mr. Tersoo Loko has announced the suspension of the local government elections as a measure to curtail the spread of the Coronavirus.
Mr. Loko who announced the shift while briefing journalists in his office in Makurdi, said as the electoral umpire, it was important to recognize that human lives are very important.
He also emphasised that the survival of Benue was equally important adding: “if we all die today, there won’t be an election tomorrow.
“It is against this background that the local government election billed to hold on the 28th of March, 2020, has been shifted because of this predicament.
“I want to assure the entire Benue populace that as soon as we find a solution to this predicament, we are going to swiftly go into the local government election to ensure we carry out a free and fair poll.”
Loko said his office was fully prepared to hold the election on the 28th if not for the ugly situation.
“As I speak, the contractor is on his way to the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Makurdi with the sensitive materials. We have about 11, 000 adhoc staff and we would have been carrying out training of our adhoc staff in the various LGs.
According to him, about six political parties are participating in the election including the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), All Progressives Congress (APC), All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Social Democratic Party (SDP), Labour Party (LP) and African Action Congress, AAC.
He said the candidates were fully screened as part of preparations towards the election assuring further that as soon as the situation improves, the election would be held.