Felix Ikem, Nsukka
As Nigerians shift attention to Saturday’s Ekiti State governorship election, some residents of Nsukka town have urged political parties candidates in the election to consider the interest of the state first, by shunning violence in all ramifications.
Residents in separate interview with Saturday Sun in Nsukka on Friday said if candidates and their supporters would shun violence it would enable Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct credible, free and fair election.
Mrs Njideka Ozioko a human right activist urged candidates to remember that Ekiti state is the only state they can call their own and avoid anything that will bring violence and loss of lives before, during and after the election..
“Candidates should exhibit high sense of maturity and spirit of sportsmanship before during and after the election in order to move the state forward.
“INEC and security agencies in their own part should resist the temptation of being used to rig the election through electoral malpractice and snatching of ballot boxes.
“The whole world is watching, as the governorship election in Ekiti is going to be another acid-test on INEC ability and credibility to conduct 2019 general elections, in the country “she said
Mr Fabian Onah, the Chairman of People Democratic Party in Nsukka LGA urged candidates not to see Saturday governorship election as a do or die affair but to bear in mind that God gives victory .
“it will be impossible for two candidates to win the Saturday governorship election rather it will be one person destined by God.
“Candidates should see the outcome of the election wishes of electorates as well as the will of God” he said
Onah urged INEC and security agencies to play according to rules of engagements by being fair and providing a level playing ground for all candidates.
“INEC officials should ensure transparency in all their actions and avoid anything capable of questioning the integrity of the commission.
“Security agencies deployed to Ekiti state for the election should provide security to all people of the state without discrimination.
“They should avoid being used by any candidate or political party to aid electoral malpractice and manhandling of innocent residents, ” he said.
Mr Anthony Chidozie a chieftain of All progressive Congress in Nsukka urged INEC to do everything within its capacity to ensure credible election as the Saturday governorship election in Ekiti would be another ‘litmus test’ for the commission on 2019 general elections.
“INEC should ensure that both its staff and adhoc staff are not used to mar the election and should not hesitate to punished any staff that compromised in his/her duty.
“The commission should ensure that it’s officials and electoral materials get to all polling booths on time as well as ensure presence of security agents in all polling booths.
“the electorates in their own part should conduct themselves in orderly manner and shun any action capable of causing violence, or marring the election ” he said.