- INEC has expressed concern over unpleasant comments made ahead of Edo and Ondo guber elections
- This was disclosed on Sunday, September 6, by Rotimi Oyekanmi, INEC's chief press secretary
- According to Oyekanmi, the commission is deeply concerned about the accusations and counter-accusations coming from politicians
Ahead of the Edo and Ondo states governorship elections, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has expressed concern over comments made by politicians that could stir violence and diminish the poll.
Rotimi Oyekanmi, INEC's chief press secretary made the statement on Sunday, September 6, at a webinar organized by the International press centre (IPC), The Sun reports.
According to Oyekanmi, the commission is deeply concerned as there have been loud drumbeats of accusations and counter-accusations coming from political actors.
He said: “As we approach the Edo Governorship election, it is clear that the good people of the state and Nigerians as a whole are very concerned about what will happen on election day.
“We have all been hearing the loud drumbeats of war from political actors. There have been accusations and counter accusations. Just like everybody else, the Commission is deeply concerned.”
The chief press secretary while noting that INEC would conduct a credible and fair poll regardless of politicians' utterances, also assured journalists of their safety during the elections.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng reported that INEC said it may suspend the coming Edo and Ondo governorship elections if there is a breakdown of law and order.
Festus Okoye, the INEC national commissioner and chairman, information and voter education committee made the statement at a meeting in Abuja on Thursday, August 6.
The meeting which was attended by stakeholders deliberated on a number of issues, including preparations for the elections.
Okoye raised concerns over the malicious actions such as destruction of opponents’ campaign materials, billboards, violent campaigns and use of offensive language.
In a related development, INEC has charged its staff to maintain neutrality and professionalism in the performance of their duties during the election.
INEC chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, made the call during a strategic meeting with the commission’s staff on Friday, August 28, in Benin.
He said neutrality and professionalism are very crucial, stressing the commission does not support any political party or candidate during elections.
The INEC boss said the choice of who becomes the governor of Edo state is entirely in the hands of the people, adding the task before the commission was to conduct a free and fair election.
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