JUST IN: INEC to Announce Election Timetable For Bayelsa, Kogi Gov Polls This Week

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says the schedule of activities for the governorship elections in Bayelsa and Kogi states, slated for later in 2019, will be released during the week.

Its chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, made the disclosure when he led other members of the Commission to defend the Commission’s 2019 budget proposal before a joint session of the Senate Committee on INEC and House Committee on Electoral matters.

According to Yakubu, the total figure for the Commission’s 2019 budget proposal is N45.4billion.

 “This year we are going to conduct two end of tenure elections into the offices of the governors in Kogi and Bayelsa States.

“This year towards the end of the year we are going to conduct governorship elections in Kogi and Bayelsea.”

He added: “Let me seize this opportunity here to say before the end of this week INEC will issue a timetable and schedule of activities for the governorship elections in Kogi and Bayelsa states”.

“For 2019, we were presented with an envelope of N45.5billion as our regular budget. This is the same envelope as in 2018, only slightly better than the envelopes of several years before them.

“In 2017, it was N45billion; in 2016, it was N45billion, and in 2018, it was increased marginally to N45.5billion and the same envelope was presented to the Commission in 2018 and 2019. I will say for the 2018 financial year we were fully funded. We were on the first line charge, so in terms of the releases from the executive to the Commission, we were fully funded.”

The INEC chairman further gave a breakdown of the proposed 45.5 billion naira, which he explained were in four components.

He said: “The first one is personnel cost and in 2019 the commission is proposing the sum of 21.8 billion naira to cover consolidated salaries for 16,455 career employees of INEC and 51 political office holders, making a total of 16,506 employees of the commission in 2019.

“The personnel cost is broken into two subheads, you have the consolidated salary of 17.5 billion and you have the social contribution, National Health Insurance, contributory pension, and employee compensation of 4.3 billion naira.”

Noting that the overhead cost is N4.2billion, while the third budget head is for electoral expenditure, he added: “The Commission is proposing the sum of N17.7 billion under the electoral expenditure to cover such activities as monitoring party primaries, conventions, voter education, stakeholder meeting legal expenses and others.”

He said the fourth and final budget head for which N1.6billion was earmarked was for capital expenditure.

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