There was a high turnout of voters in Ikare-Akoko, headquarters of the Akoko North-East Local Government area of Ondo State for the governorship election in the state in the early hours of Saturday.
Many polling units visited by NAN correspondents as at 7:30am recorded a high turnout of voters who lined up in orderly queues to perform their civic duty.
In Ikare township, all shops were locked, while security agencies were at various places, including the polling centres, while military personnel manned some major roads leading to Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, scrutinising vehicles.
Also Nigeria Police personnel, as well as FRSC and NSCDC officials mounted some road blocks in parts of the metropolis.
Ademola Iyiola, a Presiding Officer at Unit 002, Orun Ward 1, told NAN that accreditation and voting in the election commenced in his Polling Unit at exactly 8:30am, with a fairly large turnout of voters.
“We started at exactly 8:30am and we followed the INEC guidelines religiously before anybody was allowed to vote.
“We first checked their temperature and sanitised their hands, before checking their cards with the card reader, after which they are accredited and voting is conducted simultaneously,” he said.
A community leader in Ikare, Jimoh Bawa, told NAN that the prompt and orderly conduct of voters was an early indication that the election would be peaceful.
“As you can see, our people are coming out to exercise their franchise, despite the early morning shower. The people are willingly coming out early to vote and I believe, if anything, at end of the day, their votes will certainly count,” Bawa said.
Ondo State has a population of 3.5 million, with 1.47 million registered voters expected to vote in 3,009 polling units in 18 local government councils.
The governorship election is being contested by 17 political parties.