Benin – Chief Tom Ikimi, former Minister of Foreign Affairs, said on Saturday that the accreditation in Igueben for the Edo governorship election was peaceful and commended voters for turning out in large numbers.

Ikimi told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Igueben shortly after being accredited that the number would have been more but alleged that some political parties bought off voters’ card from some people.

He added that the logistics put in place by INEC were in order while the materials and election officials arrived at the stipulated time.

“As you can see, accreditation has ended. The polling officials are preparing the ground for voting at 12.30 p.m. as stipulated by the law’’

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NAN reports that food vendors and other hawkers also came out in large number at Ekpoma, Irrua and Uromi to make brisk businesses.

Political parties in the area provided canopies for voters.  Mr  Emmanuel Agbai told NAN that the canopy was a good idea as it would provide the much needed shelter for those who came to vote.

“I don’t know the providers but the idea is a good one.’’

NAN learnt that two major political parties in the state provided the canopies on the instruction of their leaders.

NAN also reports that markets were closed while major streets in the three local governments in Edo central were empty.

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The vendors and hawkers were also present in Edo south. At Garrick Memorial Primary School, Ekpenede Primary School, Asoro Primary and Urhokpota Hall,  the presence of the traders was very conspicuous.

At Auchi in Estsako, Mrs Eunice Momoh in ward 10, Iyamo, said she had finished selling several bags of packaged water and that she has gone home to bring more.

Another petty trader, Hajia Abibatu Usman, said she sold all  the maize she came out with.

People were seen buying soft drinks, buns , ice cream, garden eggs, biscuits, sweets and recharge cards at the polling centers visited. (NAN)

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