A voters’ guide to the Bayelsa governorship election on 16th November 2019

What is accreditation, and why do I need to be accredited on election day to vote?

This is to ensure that only people who are registered to vote can do so, and that only one vote is cast per person. To do this, present your PVC to the INEC Polling Officer responsible for identification. This is to ensure that your face corresponds with the photo on the card. Your thumbprint will then be used to verify that the PVC you have belongs to you, and is registered correctly. If there are problems with accreditation, you may not be able to vote.

How do I cast my vote on election day?

After accreditation, you need to cast your vote in a designated ballot box. To do this, enter the polling booth with your ballot paper, alone, or with an assistant, if you have any physical challenges. The polling booth should be stationed in such a way that nobody can see who you vote for. Mark the ballot paper in the space provided, beside the party logo of your choice, with your thumbprint. Fold the marked ballot paper vertically. Put the folded ballot paper into the ballot box in view of all present.

You must not:

  • Make more than one thumbprint on your ballot paper.
  • Make a thumbprint that is not clearly next to one name and symbol.
  • Make a thumbprint on the line separating the parties on the ballot paper.
  • Sign or write anything on your ballot paper.
  • Fold the ballot paper horizontally

The longer Guide!

It is vital that you vote because it is your formal opportunity to influence what decisions your Governor will take in Nigeria–by selecting the candidate that will make the decisions you agree with. The first step is for as many people as possible to cast their vote. The more people do this, the clearer it is what the majority of people in Bayelsa State want.

Election day outline

  • 06:00: INEC staff arrive at polling units.
  • 08:00: Polling units open for accreditation and voting.
  • 14:00: Polling units close (however, voters already in the queue at this point will be accredited and allowed to vote).
This guide is for all Nigerians registered to vote in Bayelsa State, on how to do so safely and securely, ensuring their voice is heard in the forthcoming elections. It provides an overview of what to expect on election day, how polling works, and what voters need to know. It also contains tips on how to stay safe during the elections, which can be a tense period.

Safety and security

Personal attitude

Be conscious of your safety at all times. Know the security situation in your area, and avoid areas that are identified as officially off limits, considered politically sensitive, or where security incidents are known to take place. Be polite and courteous to try to de-escalate tensions. If something goes wrong, try to remain calm, assess the situation, and decide what can be done.
Do not react violently.

Community attitude

It is possible that after the election, tensions over results may lead to conflict. It is therefore sensible that local safety arrangements include plans for how to manage disagreements. You should work as a community to ensure your area does not become the stage for violence during these election periods.

Published: 05.11.2019

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