At 9:30 AM (WAT) in Alana Junction, a polling unit located in the Rukuba road area of Jos, officials from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) set up the electoral equipment to commence voting for the legislative seats in Plateau North. However, there is not a single voter in sight.
This scene is echoed across various polling units in the Jos/Bukuru metropolis, where JoeyOffAir is monitoring the rerun elections. At locations like the Wildlife Park, voting is in progress but with a notably low turnout. On the other hand, Power City on Rukuba Road, one of the polling units where many voters were unable to cast their ballots during the last general election due to technical glitches and late arrival of INEC officials, experiences a relatively higher turnout compared to other units, though still lower than the numbers from the general election.
A user on X posted: “Just left the polling station and the level of voter apathy is mind-boggling. It didn’t even take me 5 minutes to cast my vote in a polling unit where you have to be up by 5 am to be guaranteed a spot among the first 100 voters.”
“The voting turnout is disheartening. It seems many people felt their time was wasted last year, so they are unsure if their votes will make a difference in the rerun,” one voter who cast her ballot at Wildlife Park in Jos told JoeyOffAir.
After last year’s general election, INEC announced Mwadkwon Simon Davou as the winner of the Plateau North senatorial seat and Avia Musa Agah as the federal representative for the Jos North/Bassa constituency, both from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
However, the Appeal Court nullified the elections following appeals from Chris Giwa of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Gyang Zi of the Labour Party (LP). The nullification was because the PDP failed to comply with an earlier high court order mandating the proper conduct of a state congress.
Consequently, a rerun election was ordered within 90 days, leading to the February 3 rerun in the region, but PDP candidates were excluded from the ballot.
Field reporting by Joey Shekwonuzhibo; writing by Johnstone Kpilaakaa