ANALYSIS: Voting Pattern: What to expect in Imo gubernatorial poll


    This Saturday, voters across the 27 local government areas of Imo State head to the polls to elect the governor of the state for the next four years.

    According to the final list of candidates published in October by INEC, 18 candidates are contesting the election.

    Figures published by INEC on its portal show that there are 2,419,922 registered voters in the state, but only 2,318,919 collected their permanent voter cards (PVCs) and are eligible to vote in the election on Saturday. The registered voters are 6.5 per cent more than the 2,272,293 recorded for the 2019 elections in the state.

    Voting will take place at 4,758 polling units (PU) in 305 registration areas. However, 38 PUs have no registered voters and will not open on the day.

    Voters’ strength across LGAs

    The three senatorial districts in Imo State are categorised into Owerri zone (Imo East), Orlu zone ( Imo West) and Okigwe zone ( Imo North).

    Owerri zone has nine LGAs—Aboh Mbaise, Ahiazu Mbaise,Ezinihitte Mbaise, Ikeduru, Mbaitoli, Ngor Okpala, Owerri Municipal, Owerri North and Owerri West.

    Okigwe has six LGAs (Ehime Mbano, Ihitte/Uboma, Isiala Mbano, Obowo, Okigwe, Onuimo) , while Orlu has 12 LGAs. These are Ideato North, Ideato South, Isu, Niaba, Nkwerre, Nwangele, Oguta, Ohaji/Egbema, Orlu, Orsu, Oru East and Oru West.

    However, according to data published on INEC portal, Owerri Zone with nine LGAs emerged as the zone with the highest number of PVCs collected for the 2023 governorship poll in the state.

    Data showing PVCs collected by LGAs
    Data showing PVCs collected by LGAs

    A review of the zonal data showed that 1,032,405 voters collected their PVCs in Owerri Zone, while in Orlu Zone 890,702 voters collected their PVCs. Okigwe Zone has the fewest voters with 395,812 collecting their PVCs in the area ahead of the election on Saturday.

    Categories of registered voters

    According to the INEC’s data, there are slightly more women among the voters. A total of 1,199,263 (49.9 per cent) are male, while 1,220,659 (50.1 per cent) are female.

    Of these figures, 33 per cent of the voters fall between the age bracket of 18 and 34 years, while the age group of 35-49 years (middle-aged) represent 33 per cent of the registered voters.

    Also, 23 per cent ( 559,122) fall under the age group of 50 -67 years and only 276,492 (12 per cent) are 70 years and above. A total of 1,225 are people with disabilities.

    Registered voters by category


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