Nigeria: INEC Resucitates Voters’ Education and Publicity in Ekiti
By RAZAQ BAMIDELE
Ado-Ekiti, April 4, 2018 (AltAfrika)-Ahead of the forthcoming governorship election in Ekiti State in the South-West of Nigeria and the 2019 general elections in the country, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has resuscitated the State Implementation Committee on Voters’ Education and Publicity (SICVEP) as part of efforts at ensuring free, fair, credible, acceptable and conclusive elections.
The committee is made of representatives of the Federal Ministry of Information, State Ministry of Information, the Ekiti State Office of the National Orientation Agency, Ministry of Women Affairs, the State Government owned Broadcasting Service of Ekiti State and the State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ).
Speaking during the inaugural meeting of the revived committee in Ado Ekiti, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in the State, Professor Abdul-Ganiyu Olayinka Raji stressed the importance of passing accurate information on guidelines for the on-going voters’ registration and other relevant voters’ education towards ensuring the success of the Governorship election this year and the general election scheduled for 2019.
The REC who spoke through the Administrative Secretary of the Commission in the State, Dr. Omoleke Muslim expressed satisfaction with the progress made in the on-going voters registration exercise, noting that the number of the newly registered voters had exceeded the number recorded in the previous exercise by over 20 percent.
He listed activities lined up for the committee in preparation for the elections to include organising implementation meetings with relevant stakeholders, voters’ education exercise at the grassroots level as well as production and distribution of information, education and communication materials.
Professor Raji explained that the focus of INEC was to boost political awareness of the people and make voters more conscious of their rights adding that the Commission would remain neutral and leave no stone unturned in ensuring a level playing field for all contestants.
Cautioning politicians against making inflammatory statements, Raji called on journalists to refrain from reporting stories that are capable of heating up the polity stressing the need for them to check and crosscheck their stories before going to press to avoid reporting falsehood.
He appealed to all stakeholders to act responsibly before, during and after the Ekiti State gubernatorial election scheduled to hold on Saturday, July 14, 2018 and the 2019 general election in order to achieve the desired result.