In anticipation of the forthcoming Kogi State Governorship Election scheduled for November 11, 2023, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has initiated a comprehensive training program for Supervisory Presiding Officers (SPOs). This crucial two-day training, organized by the Electoral Institute (TEI), is aimed at equipping SPOs with the necessary knowledge and skills to ensure the smooth conduct of the election, adhering to the ‘Regulation and Guidelines for the Conduct of Elections 2022.’
Commencing on October 16, 2023, the training unfolded at the College of Health Sciences, Federal University, Lokoja, Kogi State. Dr. Hale Gabriel Longpet, the Resident Electoral Commissioner of INEC in Kogi State, inaugurated the event and highlighted the pivotal role of SPOs in upholding the integrity and transparency of the electoral process. He called upon participants to approach the training with utmost seriousness and contribute to transforming Kogi State’s reputation in relation to election-related violence.
Dr. Sa’ad Umar Idris, Director General of TEI, addressed the participants, emphasizing the significance of impartiality in their roles. He underscored the importance of embracing technological advancements to ensure credible and transparent elections. Dr. Idris stressed that the effective training of election personnel is essential for conducting elections that are free, fair, credible, and inclusive.
Dr. Binta Kasim Mohammed, the Director of Training, reiterated the critical role of SPOs in effectively transferring knowledge to Presiding Officers and Assistant Presiding Officers.
The training covered a wide array of topics, including the integration of technology-driven innovations introduced by the Commission. This includes the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System device (BVAS) for voter accreditation and the enhanced iREV (INEC Result Viewing Portal) for uploading Polling Unit Results. Additionally, SPOs were introduced to INEC e-School, INEC Training BOT, and INEC Security Alert and Notification System (INEC-SANS) to ensure the safety of INEC staff and facilities.
The event witnessed the presence of prominent figures from INEC and TEI, including Mallam Shehu Baba, the Administrative Secretary of INEC Kogi State, Mr. Abdulwaheed Sani, HOD of the E-Operations Department, TEI/HQ Trainers, and Management Staff of the Electoral Institute. This comprehensive training initiative is poised to enhance the capacity of SPOs and pave the way for a transparent and credible Kogi State Governorship Election in 2023.