The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has less than a week until the general election in 2023, but the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) hasn’t given it the money it needs to run the election.
Because of the controversial cashless policy of the apex bank, the electoral body had recently presented the CBN with its cash requirement for the election.
Professor Mahmood Yakubu, the National Chairman, made the disclosure the previous week that funds for the mobilization of ad-hoc staff had not yet been made available.
The electoral body’s cash request to the CBN has not been granted even six days after the disclosure.
Even though the majority of INEC’s payments are made through online transfers, some services would require cash.
Yakubu expressed concern in a February meeting with the Governor of the Central Bank, Godwin Emefiele, at the CBN headquarters in Abuja that the country’s ongoing cash crisis might affect how the upcoming election is conducted.
The electoral umpire, on the other hand, is hopeful that the CBN will approve its cash request by Tuesday, February 21, 2023.
On Sunday, February 19, 2023, Festus Okoye, INEC’s National Commissioner and Chairman of the Committee on Information and Voter Education disclosed this to The Punch.
He stated, “We are hopeful that the challenge of physical cash required for the payment of certain categories of staff and some services will be resolved on or before Tuesday, February 21, 2023.”
Okoye stated that the cash crisis will not prevent registered voters from exercising their franchise, despite the riots that were fueled by a lack of naira.
He stated, “The Independent National Electoral Commission does not have jurisdiction over the issue of maintaining law and order.” The Nigerian Police Force is tasked with ensuring public safety and order in accordance with Section 215(3) of the Constitution.
The commission does not have its own security department, so it is unable to send security personnel out into the open.
“The commission has done everything in its power to increase voters’ faith in the electoral process.” The commission moved some voting points closer to the voters and made voting point settlements into full-fledged polling units.
“With each election, the commission keeps getting better. Nigerians are excited about the upcoming elections in 2023 and are prepared to exercise their voting rights.
“We are hopeful that the challenges the nation is facing will not deter legally registered voters from voting on election day.” We want Nigerians to show their support for the commission’s preparations and efforts by voting on election day.
Since registered voters are expected to turn out in large numbers on Saturday, February 25, 2023, INEC has stated that it is prepared to conduct the general election in 2023.