The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has warned concerned political actors in Kogi and Bayelsa States to shed off the toga of violence associated with elections.
INEC made the call on Thursday through its Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu in Lagos during the Anniversary Colloquium marking the Press Week of the Lagos State Council of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ).
The INEC boss who was represented at the event by his Special Assistant on Media, Mr Rotimi Oyekanmi, also informed that all non-sensitive materials for the governorship elections in Kogi and Bayelsa states have been delivered.
According to Yakubu, some concerns of possible violence had been raised about the forthcoming Bayelsa and Kogi governorship elections, given the violence that led to the declaration of inconclusive elections in the two states in 2015.
“Therefore, politicians in Bayelsa and Kogi must shed off the toga of political violence associated with elections in the two states.
“The commission will continue to work with security agencies under the auspices of the Inter-agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) to provide adequate security for all our elections.
“Nigerians deserve and should always have free, fair and credible elections. INEC owes the nation and Nigerians a duty to ensure that votes count.
“The present commission has demonstrated this commitment in all the elections it has conducted, in spite of multiple challenges.
“Ultimately, the commission’s ability to organise credible elections also depend on the cooperation of all stakeholders in the electoral process and the strict adherence to the rules of the game.
“The commission will continue to ensure that votes count,” he noted.
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