Just as the gubernatorial elections draw nearer, the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has insisted that corps members who are deployed as ad-hoc staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, will not be allowed to work in security-challenged areas in the country during the elections.
The NYSC Director of Press and Public Relations, Mrs. Adenike Adeyemi, made this known in an interview in Abuja on Saturday, ahead of the upcoming Governorship and House of Assembly polls slated for March 9.
Adeyemi, who said that no corps member died during the Presidential and National Assembly Elections, which held on February 23, assured that the safety and security of corps members remained a top priority for the scheme.
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She said that corps members would not be posted to work as ad-hoc staff for the March elections in any state or area of the Federation that had been adjudged as having security challenges.
According to Adeyemi, the NYSC do not allow corps members work in any security challenged area, whether it is for primary assignment or for elections and INEC understands that.
“Corps members are not allowed to work or live in such areas and this is understood by INEC. Once a place is adjudged and declared as having security challenges, corps members are not to serve there either for elections or primary assignments.
“Their security is always considered by the scheme during posting.
“We have seen reports in the media claiming that corps members died during the presidential and national assembly elections.
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“The NYSC Coordinator in Rivers already addressed this issue and set the records straight that no corps member serving as INEC ad hoc staff died during the February 23 elections.
“There were pockets of violence in the state but no corps member lost his or her life.
“Before corps members are deployed as INEC ad hoc staff, there must be an MoU between the two organisations and as part of the MoU, INEC is to provide welfare and security for the corps members.
“Payment of remuneration is also fixed and disbursed by INEC. The commission has stated how much corps members are entitled to and they also agreed that their welfare, which includes transportation and feeding, will be handled by them,” Adeyemi said.
She said that the responsibility of the scheme was to ensure that the commission carried out to the letter, all agreements signed by it.