INEC to curb electoral violence
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said there are measures in place to curb violence in the 2015 elections.
Its Chairman, Prof Attahiru Jega, said the commission would be transparent to earn the trust of its various stakeholders.
The commission said inflammatory and hate speeches among politicians are possible sources of pre- and post-election violence.
Other sources, the commission said, are the “do-or-die” attitude of politicians to politics; the lack of internal democracy among parties, that is, the failure of parties to respect their constitution; ignorance and low civic education; the use of thugs to achieve victory; unwillingness of politicians to accept election results; monetisation of electoral processes by politicians and attempts to compromise election officials.
Prof Jega spoke in Abuja when he presented a paper, titled: Curbing the rate of pre-and post-election violence in Nigeria, at the beginning of the Youth Against Election Violence, organised by Common Wealth Youth Council (CYC).
The INEC chairman, who was represented by an electoral commissioner, Nne Gladys Nwafor, said: “Over the years, our elections have been dogged by violence across the country. The violence that attended the 2011 elections is still fresh in our minds.
“To ameliorate violence, the commission has introduced transparent measures to elicit the trust and support of stakeholders. It has increased its enlightenment with stakeholders, such as the media, civil society organisations, politicians and political parties.”
Reaffirming the role of the commission and its workers, Prof Jega noted that it was paramount to remain transparent in INEC’s engagements and diffuse tensions, reduce suspicion and speculations that could lead to election violence.
According to him, INEC officials must work closely with state institutions, including security agencies, to identify early enough possible sources of violence so that the commission could prevent them.
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