INEC issues fresh warning to parties, political leaders to eschew violence - Naijarecent
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INEC issues fresh warning to parties, political leaders to eschew violence

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has issued fresh warnings to political parties and political leaders to conduct their campaigns peacefully, and eschew divisiveness, rancour and violence.

It also reiterated its determination to deploy technologies in the conduct of next year’s general elections, emphasising that there is no going back on the use of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) and the INEC Result Viewing Portal (IReV).

In his message to mark 100 days to the presidential and National Assembly elections, the Chairman of the Commission, Mahmood Yakubu, promised to continue regular engagement with political parties, civil society organisations, the media and other critical stakeholders.

“As I have said repeatedly, the commission’s allegiance is to Nigeria. Our loyalty is to Nigerians who want free, fair, credible and verifiable elections supported by technology, which guarantees transparent accreditation and upload of polling unit results for citizens to view in real-time on Election Day.

“It is for these reasons that the BVAS and the IReV were introduced. There is no going back on the deployment of BVAS and IReV for the 2023 general election.

“Similarly, we will continue with our regular engagement with political parties, civil society organisations, the media and other critical stakeholders. Above all, Nigerians deserve the right to know about the progress we are making and the challenges (if any) we confront in our preparations for the General Election.

“Accordingly, in a couple of weeks, the Commission will start bi-weekly media briefings followed by weekly briefings as we get closer to the election. In the week leading to the election, there will be daily briefings.

“I seize this opportunity to call on all citizens to participate fully in all electoral activities, particularly the ongoing display of the Register of Voters for claims and objections, as well as a collection of Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVCs). I also call on political parties and political leaders to conduct their campaigns peacefully, eschewing divisiveness, rancour and violence.

“As Nigerians are aware, the election is a multi-stakeholder activity. We will continue to play our part diligently and conscientiously. We appeal to all stakeholders and, above all, citizens to play their own part so that working together, we can have the elections that Nigerians yearn for, and which the world expects from us,” the commission’s boss appealed.

The electoral umpire chairman noted in the message that; “it is exactly 100 days before polling units open at 8:30 am on Saturday, February 25, 2023, for national elections (Presidential and National Assembly) and two weeks later on Saturday, March 11, 2023, for State elections (Governorship and State Houses of Assembly).

“Once again, another General Election is upon us, the 7th since the restoration of democracy in Nigeria in 1999. Over the last 23 years, we have made steady progress in the twin areas of electoral reform and election administration. Although a lot of work still lies ahead, it is generally acknowledged that our elections are getting better and citizens’ confidence in the process is increasing.”

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