INEC unveils 176,846 polling units for 2023 elections
As part of efforts to deliver credible, transparent elections and enhance voters’ participation, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), yesterday, disclosed that 176,846 polling units (PUs) would be available for the 2023 general elections, a 56,872 increase or approximately 41 per cent boost over the previous 119,974 units.
A breakdown of the distribution, as announced by the commission’s Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, during a meeting with the Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) in Abuja, showed that while additional 31,196 units were allocated to the North, the southern part of the country got 25,676 new booths, leaving a difference of 5, 529.
Similarly, a cursory look at state-by-state distribution revealed that Lagos, which ranked highest with 4,861 PUs, was closely followed by Kano (3,148); Kaduna (2,910); Rivers (2424) and Plateau (2,358). Ekiti State has the lowest with 250 new PUs.
Also, following the increased number of polling units in the country to 176, 846, the North now boasts of 93,191 PUs as against the 83,655 currently domiciled in the South, indicating a disparity of 9,536 PUs.
Rating the distribution according to geo-political zones, The Guardian discovered that the North Central is with 27,514 PUs, up from its previous 15,981 tally, North West, which had 29,554 moved to 41,671, just as North East, with an additional 7546 PUs, now has 24,006.
For the South South, its additional 9,367 PUs moved its total to 27,126 booths, while the South East, which formerly had 15,549 PUs, now boasts of 21,631 and the South West, with earlier 24, 671 PUs, now has 34, 898 centres.
Yakubu explained that some voting points, including those in shrines, private residences and groves, were converted to polling units.
He announced June 18 and July 16, 2022 as dates for the gubernatorial contests in Ekiti and Osun states.
The INEC Chairman explained that the tenure of the Ekiti State governor would expire on October 15, 2022 while that of Osun terminate on November 26 of same year.