Friday, 4 December 2015

ELECTION MONITOR BAYELSA STATE GOVERNORSHIP ELECTION PRELIMINARY PRESS STATEMENT



ELECTION MONITOR BAYELSA STATE GOVERNORSHIP ELECTION PRELIMINARY PRESS STATEMENT


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Friday 4th December, 2015

Election Monitor (EM) is one of the fifty (50) Election Observation groups accredited by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to observe the 2015 Bayelsa State Governorship Election. Election Monitor has 55 observers in its mission who will be deployed across various Local Government Areas of Bayelsa State on Saturday 5th December 2015.

On Saturday November 28 2015, the INEC Resident Commisssioner (REC) for Bayelsa State, Hon. Baritor Lenu Kpagih at the "Promoting Credible Non-Violent Election in Bayelsa State" town hall meeting stated that the Commission is adequately prepared and ready for the December 5 Governorship poll in the State. Distribution of sensitive materials to SuperRACs (Registration Area Centres) has already commenced and is almost completed.

INEC also earmarked Wednesday 2nd to Friday 4th December 2015 for distribution of observer kits which comprise an information CD, yellow neon coloured vest, face cap, ID card and plastic carrier bag. INEC also held an insightful and pratical accredited observers and party agents briefing at NUJ Press Centre on Thursday 3rd December 2015 in Yenagoa the  Bayelsa State capital. Election Monitor calls on INEC to improve upon its logistics and general operational successes recorded in the recently held Kogi State Governorship Election on November 21 2015.

According to media reports, the Nigeria Police has deployed at least 14,000 officers to ensure the provision of adequate security before, during and after the governoship poll on Saturday. The Inspector General of Police, Solomon E. Arase, fdc, NPM on Tuesday 2nd December 2015 stated at an interactive session with stakeholders in Yenegoa, that the police would lock down the waterways while a Deputy Inspector General of Police would supervise the election with three additional commissioners of police and about 15 units of mobile police force officers. Huge numbers of police contingents were sighted moving into Bayelsa State in the days preceeding the election.

Election Monitor calls on the Nigeria Police to ensure that its deployment of officers targets flashpoints which have a history of election related violence so as to avoid the situation experienced in the recently held governorship election in Kogi State where election was cancelled in polling units in areas such as Ayingba which had cases of election day violence during the immediate past general elections in the country.The Nigeria Police should also ensure that election malpractices such as ballot box snatching and disruption of the election day process are prevented as much as possible. A situation where 91 polling units in Kogi State governorship election have results cancelled because of violence and other malpractices should not be repeated in Bayelsa State considering the huge deployment of security personnels. The Nigeria Police should also ensure it promptly provides out-of-station allowance for its personnel to enable them carry out their responsibilities more effectively. Election Monitor commends the Nigeria Police for its professional conduct during the recent Kogi governorship election and calls for an even better performance in the Bayelsa governorship election. The Nigeria Police should keep its promise to bring to book all electoral offenders no matter how highly placed.

Election Monitor also notes that several civil society groups within Bayelsa State have endorsed different candidates. CSOs should endeavour to play their role as non-partisan stakeholders in order to sustain the credibility of non-state actors in the electoral process. 

Politicians are urged to abide by INEC regulations and shun all activities that could trigger violence.

Election Monitor enjoins all eligible voters with permanent voter cards in Bayelsa State to come out en masse and exercise their civic duty on Saturday 5th December, 2015.  

1 comment:

  1. RISDGA one of the observer groups accredited by the INEC commends your efforts. Well done.

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