2023 Election Headline News

CSOs task INEC on neutrality

Members of the CSOs Situation during the 2023 preliminary election briefing

The Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room has advised the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to remain neutral during the election process.

The advise is coming few hours to the Presidential and National Assembly elections in Nigeria.

the Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room is made up of over 70 CSOs focused on election observation.

Briefing Journalists on Friday in Abuja, on the situation Room Preliminary election findings, they noted with concern the challenges experienced in different regions of the country, stressing that it might affect the peaceful conduct of the poll.

“It is important that the Commission monitors the activities of its officials and ensure that they conduct the electoral process in a fair and credible manner. It is critical that the Nigeria Police and other security agencies safeguard citizens, remain vigilant towards election violence, tackle vote buying and work together with stakeholders to ensure a safe and peaceful election”.

The Convener of the CSOs Situation Room Ms Ene Obi reminded all citizens and political parties to conduct themselves in a peaceful manner and to discourage violence by their supporters. “It is crucial that candidates and parties have a moral and legal obligation to abide by the Peace Agreement, as there will be consequences for reneging in the agreement in accordance with the provisions of the Electoral Act 2022“.

She added that “With barely a few hours to the elections, fuel scarcity and bank queues remains, couple with the already tense atmosphere. The Situation Room recognizes that certain areas in Lagos State could potentially be hot spots as the elections progress”.

“In light of these, Situation Room finds it incumbent for security services especially the Nigeria Police within the State to prioritise creating a secure environment for citizens to exercise their franchise. We strongly condemns the killings and any acts of election violence and urges authorites to stem further violence to create an enabling environment for peaceful elections”.

Reporting by Julian Osamoto; Editing by Abdullahi Lamino