By Lucy Osuizigbo and Yemi Adeleye
Lagos – Voters in Eti-Osa Constituency I of Lagos State came out in few numbers on Saturday for the election of their new representative in the state House of Assembly.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the bye-election, organised by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), resulted from the death of Mr Kazeem Alimi who represented the constituency in the House.
Alimi died on July 18. t.
NAN reports that few people were seen casting their votes in some polling units, hours after the polls opened at 8.00a.m.
As at noon, the INEC ad-hoc staff said that less than 100 out of the 1,391 registered voters had cast their ballots at Polling Unit 004, Ward-5 at Ilado /Eti-Osa.
At Polling Unit 002, Ward-5 in Ilado/Eti-Osa, 21 voters out of 1,516 registered voters cast their votes as at noon.
Also, at PU 016 in Ward-4, Lekki/Ikate, which has 1966 registered voters, less than 50 voters cast their vote as at 1.39p.m.
In some polling units in Ward-2 and Ward-3 on Victoria Island, the situation was the same.
INEC ad-hoc workers had little to do.
Reacting, Prof. Abdul-Ganiyu Olayinka, the Resident Electoral Commissioner for Ekiti, who monitored the bye-election, decried the poor turnout.
He, however, told NAN that low turnout was not unexpected in a bye-election
Olayinka said: “So far, the election has been going on smoothly. We don’t have problem except in one or two places where rain disturbed.
“We started on time. We have not had any disappointment with all card readers. We are very happy with the performance of the card readers.
“What I notice is that there is low turnout, maybe because this is an elitist area or because there is no movement restriction.
“People should take election serious and come out to elect the person they want as leaders, so that we won’t be blaming ourselves.’’
Alhaji Taofik Kokoroowo, the Peoples Democratic Party agent at Polling Unit 4 in Ward 5, Ilado Eti-Osa, regretted lamented poor turnout.
“Election is going well but people didn’t come. People don’t recognise re-run election; they have gone to work,” he told NAN.
Kokoroowo commended INEC and security agencies for a smooth election.
Mr Lekan Badmus, the All Progressives Congress (APC) agent in the same unit, also hailed INEC and security operates.
He equally decried the poor turnout. (NAN)