Samson Itodo, the Executive Director of Yiaga Africa, a leading election observer, has disclosed that approximately 200 million ballot papers were wasted during the recently concluded presidential and National Assembly elections because many eligible voters did not show up to cast their votes.
Itodo made this revelation during an interview on Channels Television’s The 2023 Verdict on Wednesday.
He revealed that out of the 72 million ballot papers issued to accredited voters, about 200 million ballot papers were wasted. Itodo further stated that the cost of the election was approximately six to eight dollars per voter, which means that billions of naira were wasted due to voters’ apathy.
He lamented that the funds wasted could have been utilized to improve the primary healthcare sector by providing drugs to healthcare centers. Meanwhile, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had conducted the presidential and National Assembly elections in Nigeria, with a total of 93,469,008 registered voters and 87.2 million collected permanent voter cards.
At the end of the polls, Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) emerged victorious, having won in 12 of Nigeria’s 36 states, with a total of 8,794,726 votes, while his closest rival, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), garnered 6,984,520 votes.