2015 Nigeria Election Observation Report - page 13

2015 Nigeria National Elections
13
Security Services
The police and other security services played an overall positive role in providing security
to polling units on Election Day without interfering in electoral processes. IRI observers
reported security personnel were present at 81 percent of polling units observed. While civil
society, voters and the media had raised important questions about the role that the police
and military would play and concerns about the potential for intimidation, in the end,
observers did not witness this. After long delays at polling units when tensions were high,
police played a positive, critical role in maintaining calm and order in a professional manner.
At one polling unit in Ekiti state, a police officer was involved in the distribution of election
materials due to the understaffing of the polling unit. Aside from this minor incident, no
reports were made of security personnel interfering in the electoral process in any way.
Other Challenges Observed
Low Voter Turn Out
IRI observers noted that while many polling units seemed to be busy, when observers
compared the total number of registered voters for a particular polling unit with the number
of voters accredited and the number of ballots cast at that polling unit while observing
closing procedures, it appeared that turnout had been fairly low. These findings have
subsequently been corroborated by the
for the presidential election issued by
INEC which indicates that voter turnout was 43.65 percent. The table below illustrates the
drop-off in participation at the various stages of the electoral process in Nigeria, whichmeant
that only 33.53 percent of eligible voters cast a ballot in the 2015 presidential election.
Category
Number of
People
Percentage
Eligible voters
87,784,373
49.5% of total population
Total number of registered voters
67,422,005
76.8% of eligible voters
Total number of PVCs distributed
56,350,776
83.6% of registered voters
Total number of accredited voters
31,746,490
56.3% of voters with a PVC
Total number of votes cast
29,432,083
92.71% of accredited voters
Table 1: Drop-off in participation at various stages of electoral process
5
Election Day Violence
The police had given the assurance of their readiness to provide adequate security coverage
for election officials and materials, including voters, and local and foreign observers. In
Rivers state, IRI observers witnessed a generally peaceful process; however, violence still
marred the election in Rivers, with at least three election-related deaths reported. Other
violent incidents were reported by IRI’s observer team in Rivers state in the Eleme and
Ubima areas of Ikwerre LGA.
5
All figures are based on official INEC results for the presidential election with the exception of the estimated
voter age population taken from th
e
of the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral
Assistance, and the number of PVCs distributed (as at March 17, 2015), which was announced by INEC.
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