ABUJA – The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has issued a corrigendum in respect of the Guidelines and Regulations for the Conduct of the  2015 General Elections and the Manual for Election Officials 2015.
The information is contained in the commission’s daily bulletin.
It stated that the corrigendum was issued on Monday following the observations of Resident Electoral Commissioners and political parties as well as the input of its Legal Services Department and consortium of lawyers.
According to the statement, 26 of the approved guidelines and regulations for the conduct of the 2015 General Elections on Sorting and Counting of Ballots and Recording of votes have been amended.
The amendment requires that at the close of voting, the presiding officer cancel all unused ballot papers by crossing them and sort the ballots at two levels, publication stated.
It stated that the officer should:  “Sort all wrongly deposited ballots and transfer them into their appropriate ballot boxes;
“Sort out the ballots by party and thereafter loudly count the votes scored by each party in the presence of the polling agents and observers.’’
It also stated that paragraph 2.8.2 on Sorting Procedures in the Manual for Elections Officials, 2015 was also amended as follows:
“There shall be 2 levels of sorting namely: (a.) Sorting for wrongly deposited ballot; and (b.)     Sorting by party.’’
It added that in sorting for wrongly deposited ballots, the Presiding Officer (PO) shall: engage in three steps.
“Step 1. Starting with the House of Representatives, sort out all wrongly deposited ballots;
“Step 2. Transfer the ballots deposited in the wrong box to their appropriate ballot boxes;
“Step 3. Return the other ballots into the ballot box.’’
“It added that the official shall repeat steps 1, 2 and 3 above for the Senatorial and Presidential Elections.’’
On sorting by party, it stated that the PO should follow nine steps starting with the House of Representatives; sort out the ballots into separate piles for each party and one pile for rejected ballots.
It added that the PO should sort out the ballot papers by party and thereafter loudly count the votes scored by each party in the presence of the polling agents and observers.
“The official shall write the word “REJECTED” on the front of every rejected ballot.
“The official shall show all rejected ballots to the polling agents and observers present.
“Where any objection against such a rejection is raised by a candidate or polling agent, write the word “Rejected but objected to” on the front of the ballot.
“Count and record the quantity of the rejected ballots and their serial numbers on Form EC 40B.’’
Other steps according to the publication are that the PO shall put all rejected ballots in  envelop EC 50A as well count and record the quantity of tendered ballots on Form EC 40F.
“The official shall then put all Tendered Ballots in the envelop provided.’’
It stated that he should  follow the above steps in the case of the Senatorial and Presidential elections.
“Follow the same procedure above for sorting and counting of ballots for the governorship and house of assembly elections, beginning with the House of Assembly Elections.
It added that “item (f) of page 50 under NOTES on Rejected ballots is hereby deleted.