The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) said threats by pro-Biafran groups would not stop it from continuing to conduct elections in the South-East.
This position was revealed on Tuesday by the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner, Enugu State, Mr. Emeka Ononamadu, who addressed journalists in Enugu.
He described calls for boycott of the Anambra State governorship election and other polls in the South- East as counter-productive but insisted that the electoral body was not bothered by the threat.
Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), had only weeks ago vowed that the November 18 governorship poll in Anambra State, and future elections in the South-East, would not be allowed to hold unless the Federal Government agreed to the group’s demand for a referendum in the region.
Onanamadu, while reviewing the Continuous Voter Registration in Enugu, was asked if the pro-Biafran groups had made efforts to stop people from registering to vote in coming elections.
He said that INEC was not aware of any practical attempts by the secessionists to disrupt the exercise, but noted that even if IPOB made good its threat to stop its members from voting, elections would still take place and winners would be declared.
He stressed that it would not be possible for IPOB to stop people from voting as the political parties were expected to mobilise their members to vote.
Asked if the boycott threat had affected the voter registration exercise, the REC stated, “I don’t think that we have such a challenge here in Enugu.
“However, I will say that, no matter the agitation, elections are crucial to the government and people must come out to vote; somebody must be declared winner and INEC is there to do that.
“INEC has no business with calls for secession or boycott; our mandate is to conduct elections to fill certain positions.
“At the end of the day, Enugu must have a governor in 2019, whether it is just one person that manages to come out to vote.”
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