“March 18, Election day not war”-INEC

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-Promises to handle cases of electoral offences

Few days to the Governorship and Houses of Assembly elections, INEC(Independent National and Electoral Commission) has appealed to political parties and voters to regard March 18 as a day of election and not a day to instigate and perpetrate war.

In his words, “It is, therefore, important for parties and candidates to speak to their agents and supporters to see the elections as a contest, not war. They should refrain from acts of violence that may make the elections or compromise the security of our personnel, observers, the media and service providers.”

The INEC chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu made this known at a meeting of the Inter-agency Consultative Committee on Election Security, yesterday.

However, National Security Adviser (NSA), Maj-Gen Babagana Monguno (rtd) pointed out during the meeting that the election scheduled to hold on Saturday 18 of March would be more complicated than that of the 25 February Presidential election. He also called on political parties to call their supporters to order. In his words, “First of all, we are going to have 1,021 constituencies. This means that we are going to have more people interested, more people voting, more collation centres and obviously, the dynamics will be much more different than the elections that we have just concluded.”

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Professor Mahmood Yakubu added that unlike the presidential election which only involved 470 constituencies; 1 Presidential, 109 Senatorial districts and 360 House of Representatives seats. the state elections will involve over 1,021 constituencies, 28 Governorship and 993 candidates of the state Assembly.

He made it known that the committee had earlier converged to discuss security protocols for the presidential and National Assembly elections, stressing that the Inter-agency Consultative Committee on Election Security is also part of the preparation for a smooth election on Saturday.

The chairman revealed that INEC held a meeting with all the Resident Electoral Commissioners (REC) on Monday, to discuss issues such as logistics, election technology and a wide range of other issues for the upcoming election.

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Eze Sylvia Amarachukwu
Eze Sylvia Amarachukwu

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