THE NATION HEADLINE: Lawmakers consider INEC’s N189.2b elections budget

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Work has begun on the budget of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for the 2019 elections.

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INEC Chairman Prof Mahmood Yakubu yesterday defended the commission’s N189.2 billion budget at separate sessions with the Senate’s and House of Representatives’ committees on INEC.

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Yakubu, who gave a breakdown of the various components of the budget, told the lawmakers that preparations for the poll ought to have started by August 15 (yesterday).

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Documents submitted to the lawmakers by INEC indicated that election operational cost will cost N134.4bn; technology -N27.5bn; administrative cost -N22.6bn; and miscellaneous -N4.6bn.

The INEC chair spoke of significant increase in the variables and logistics for the 2019 elections as against the 2015 polls that cost N120 billion.

According to him, the commission will be conducting elections with about 91 political parties on the ballot. There are over 82 million registered voters.

The voter population in 2015 was about 70 million, with about 40 political parties on the ballot.

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