The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is billed to install Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras in critical polling units to deter rigging and criminal activities during the 2011 election. The essence of providing the cameras is to guard against criminal elements and corrupt officials who may attempt to use the election periods to manipulate the process for fake results.
The Economic Confidential gathered that the Chairman of the Commission, Professor Attahiru Jega and his federal commissioners have been contemplating on using devices that could block every loophole against malpractices during the elections.
The CCTV cameras can produce images or recordings for surveillance purposes. There are feelers that ballot boxes can be bugged with taping devices as well as using tiny surveillance equipment as small as pens and phones that use batteries and solar energy rather than relying on electricity generated gadgets.
Recently at a forum organized by the Third Estate in Ilorin, Kwara State, a National Commissioner of INEC, Dr. Abdulkadir S. Oniyangi disclosed that the Commission has commenced work with development partners to establish an electronic, real time monitoring of the registration process and elections, with possibilities of integrating high quality video.
Dr. Oniyangi further added that the Commission has commenced work with development partners to produce a comprehensive interactive map of all poling units to make it easy for people to locate them which will be tied to ongoing updates and total remodeling of the website.
The Economic Confidential further gathered that the Commission is discussing with armed forces and other organizations on receiving coordinated logistical support for INEC during the registration of voters and the elections proper.
It is yet to be confirmed if the CCTV will be installed in all the 120,000 polling units in the country or in selected areas that are noted as hotbeds of electoral malpractices.
Due to their large populations, Lagos and Kano States have the highest polling units with over 8,000 respectively.
The breakdown of the polling units in Nigeria is detailed below:
Abia 2678 Adamawa 2612 Akwa Ibom 2982
Anambra 4623 Bauchi 4074 Bayelsa 1805
Benue 3691 Borno 3933 Cross River 2283
Delta 3625 Ebonyi 1784 Edo 2629
Ekiti 2195 Enugu 2958 Gombe 2218
Imo 3522 Jigawa 3527 Kaduna 5108
Kano 8074 Katsina 4897 Kebbi 2398
Kogi 2548 Kwara 1872 Lagos 8465
Nassarawa 1495 Niger 3188 Ogun 3221
Ondo 3009 Osun 3010 Oyo 4783
Plateau 2631 Rivers 4441 Sokoto 3035
Taraba 1911 Yobe 1714 Zamfara 2410