Desperate politicians, challenge to Nigeria’s electoral process

Fisayo Akinduro, Osogbo
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has described the attitude of some  politicians as a major challenge to the electoral process in Nigeria.

Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in Osun State, Mr Olusegun Agbaje stated this in Osogbo during a stakeholders meeting in the state ahead of Saturday’s election.

Agbaje observed that politicians often display conducts influenced by desperation to win election at all cost.

He disclosed that over 16,000 ad-hoc staff have been recruited and trained to cover the 3,010 polling units in the state, noting that 1,266, 587 Permanent Voters’ Cards have been collected, leaving 413, 606 PVCs uncollected.

The electoral umpire, who attempted a comparative analysis of election in Nigeria and some other countries, appealed to the ruling class that the country was ripe for election without the supervision of security agencies.

He explained that the commission had the power to hold supplementary election, but warned politicians not to allow conditions that could degenerate to declaring election inconclusive.

He disclosed that sensitive materials would be distributed on Thursday, warning politicians  against violence, so that Nigeria can have credible elections.

He said: “If we must tame the monstrous phenomenon of vote buying and other wicked forces that have continuously threatened the credibility of our elections in Nigeria, the political class must change its ‘do or die’ attitude to good conduct in politics.”

The INEC boss reassured the readiness of the commission to be neutral and transparent, as well as create a level playing field for all the candidates

The stakeholders who responded, including representatives of political parties reached a consensus that elections should not be taken as a war, but rather a freewill of the people to choose the managers of their resources.

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On their part, two traditional rulers, Olufi of Gbongan, Oba Adetoyese Oyeniyi  and Aragbiji of Iragbiji, Oba Abdulrasheed Olabomi also appealed to politicians to allow the process to run its natural course.

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