Students from different secondary schools in Edo State, on Monday 5th September 2016, demanded the shift of Saturday’s governorship election because it coincided with the date for them to write Mathematics by the West African Examination Council (WAEC).
The students, who stormed the Edo Government House in Benin City with different placards, said they would resist any attempt to disenfranchise or move them to other states to write the examination as planned by WAEC.
They added that the act will not only disorganise them but put them at a disadvantage.
Speaking on behalf of the students, Iko Emmanuel Moses, who expressed regret and pains over the arrangement, said it would affect their performance in the very important subject, noting that such “situation is very disturbing, discouraging and we cannot take the risk.”
He continued: “This examination is about our future, and therefore, we will not take or accept the risk. We call on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to do something about this situation. We call on all the political parties concerned to do something to save our future.
The examination has already started in Edo State and it will be dangerous to move us out of the terrain we are already used to our centres and compelling us to write the most important ones outside the state is uncalled for.
“President Muhammadu Buhari should come to our aid. The Comrade Governor should also come to our help. Our future must not be sacrificed for election,” Moses said.
One of the parents who joined the students in the protest, said: “What I want you to know, Your Excellency (Governor), is that there’s going to be a strong financial commitment to the parents, taking the children to other states will involve accommodation, feeding and it will bite deep into our already lean purse. So, I want to appeal to you that this should be reconsidered. We are quite aware that WAEC is a regional examination and so it cannot be shifted. We are also thinking of how the election itself is shifted so that we will have time for our children and also for them to vote.”
In his response, Governor Adams Oshiomhole said he would pass their protest letter to the President, saying the election was fixed by INEC which is an independent body.