Guber Poll: NCDC releases guidelines for Edo, Ondo elections

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has released guidelines for elections being conducted in Nigeria amid COVID-19 pandemic.
In the new directives published on Monday, the NCDC encouraged political parties to adopt virtual campaign rallies where applicable.
It said when such is not feasible, every individual attending rallies must have their temperature checked while they must also wear face masks.
It added that social distancing guidelines must be strictly followed at the polling units where multiple hand washing points and/or alcohol-based hand sanitisers should also be provided.
It added that based on the current risk level of COVID-19 in Nigeria and the ongoing community transmission, the number of those gathered should be limited to one-third of the actual capacity of the venue with minimum of two metres observed.

Below are the various guidelines for respective groups:
  • Develop and publicise voters’ code of conduct including what is expected of voters to adequately protect themselves from COVID-19 at polling stations.
  • Educate all election staff and volunteers on voting process and measures put in place to protect them.
  • Venues for voter’s registration and collection of voter’s cards should be organised, have markings to keep people 2 metres away from each other, well ventilated and hand washing facilities made available.
  • The use of face masks must be mandatory for everyone attending the campaign rally.
  • Temperature checks should be carried out at the entrance/gate before any individual enters the campaign ground. Anyone with a temperature above 37.5°C should not be allowed into the campaign ground.
For Politicians:
  • Publicise and adhere to codes of conduct developed by INEC, including public health and social measures expected at rallies and election locations.
  • Avoid utilising campaign venue to full capacity; we recommend one third of venue capacity.
  • If essential, multiple rallies should be conducted with appropriate numbers of people to enable adequate physical distancing in each gathering per time.
  • Hand hygiene facilities including soap and water/ hand sanitisers should be made available for people before gaining access to campaign ground.
  • The use of face masks must be mandatory for everyone attending the campaign rally.
Polling station staff
  • Staff should be on the lookout and stay at home if they have a fever, respiratory symptoms, or feel generally unwell.
  • Provide a temperature control point at the entrance of the polling station to check voter’s temperature, and people with a high temperature should be asked to go home.
  • All staff at the polling unit should practice hand hygiene frequently: wash hands often with soap and water for at least 40 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Practice routine cleaning of equipment and minimise use of shared materials unless they are adequately cleaned before reuse.
  • After thumb printing the ballot paper, voters should be advised to not touch their faces until they wash their hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitiser.
  • After counting ballot papers, polling staff should not touch their faces until they wash their hands with soap and water or clean with alcohol based hand sanitisers.

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