Only 36 per cent of voters participated in off-cycle elections

CHECKS by The ICIR have shown that only 35.59 per cent of voters in Kogi, Bayelsa and Imo states participated in electing governors in their respective states. 

The three states held off-cycle elections on November 11, 2023. 

With a combined estimated population of 12 million people, only 5.41 million people were registered voters for the off-cycle elections. Of this amount, only 5.17 million voters collected their Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs), according to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

However, findings by The ICIR showed that the total number of votes cast in the three states was 1,840,118 votes; translating to about 36 per cent of the total number of voters with PVCs.

This report looks to establish voters’ participation in the gubernatorial election by reviewing the total number of votes cast and comparing it with the number of voters in each state.

The ICIR reported that INEC declared both candidates of All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate in Imo state, Hope Uzodimma, and Kogi state, Usman Ododo, as the winners of the governorship poll, and incumbent governor, Douye Diri, of the People’s Democratic Party, as the winner of the Bayelsa state election. [click here for more reports].

The results agree with the prediction made by The ICIR report which used the statistics of the lawmaker’s election in February and March to examine the chances of political parties to win the governorship seat. 

Kogi state

According to INEC, there were 3,508 polling units spreading across the 21 local governments in the state. The total number of registered voters in the state was 1.93 million. 

However, out of these registered voters, only 1.83 million have collected their PVCs. This represents 94.85 per cent of PVCs collected. While the number of uncollected PVCs is 99,494 representing 5.15 per cent. 

18 candidates contested for the gubernatorial seat of which are 17 male candidates and 1 female candidate. INEC also said that  137,973 political party agents participated in monitoring the polls. 

Meanwhile, the total number of votes cast during the electioneering process in the state was 837,260 votes. This represents 45.67 per cent of voters with PVCs. When broken down into 100s, this means that only 46 out of 100 voters who had their PVCs participated in the election. 

Also, Ododo won the elections with 446,237 votes. This represents 53.3 per cent of the total votes cast during the polls. He successfully won 10 out of 12 local governments.

Bayelsa state

In Bayelsa state, there were 1.06 million registered voters with 1.02 million voters with PVcs. This is 96.29 per cent when the figures are compared. Meanwhile, 39,249 voters are without PVCs representing 3.71 per cent. 

The number of polling units is 2,244 located in eight local government areas. Also, 16 aspirants contested for the seat of which 14 candidates are males while 2 candidates are females. INEC said that 65,274 political party agents monitored the polls across the states.

Meanwhile, the total number of votes cast in the state was 291,212. This means 28.62 per cent of voters with PVCs went to the polls. When broken down in 100s, it translates to 29 out of 100 voters.

Diri, who was re-elected for a second term, won the elections with 175,196 votes. This is 60.16 per cent of the total votes cast. He won six out of eight local governments in the state. 



    Imo state

    For Imo state, there are 4,758 polling units across the 27 local governments in the state. The number of registered voters was 2.43 million of which 2.32 million have collected their PVCs representing 95.83 per cent.

    The number of people without PVCs was 101,003 representing 4.17 per cent. A total of 17 male candidates contested for the seat with 37,995 political party agents monitoring the polls. 

    However, the total number of votes cast during the electioneering exercise was 711,646 votes, representing 30.69 per cent of the total number of voters with PVCs in the state and when broken down into 100s, it is 31 out of every 100 vote cast. 

    Uzodimma, who was re-elected for a second term, won the election with 540,308 votes which is 75.92 per cent of votes cast during the election clearing all 27 local governments. 

    Kehinde Ogunyale tells stories by using data to hold power into account. You can send him a mail at [email protected] or Twitter: Prof_KennyJames

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