From Jude Owuamanam, Jos

Governor Caleb Mutfwang of Plateau state on Monday inaugurated new chairman and members of the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission (PLASIEC) with a promise to ensure that local government administration in the state is given all strength to function effectively.

Speaking while inaugurating the new PLASIEC team, Mutfwang said that the appointments were made pursuant to the powers conferred on him by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria1999 as amended.

Hon. Plangji Daniel Chishak wa named as the chairman; Mrs. Theresa Kaze, Mrs. Deborah Akanle, Hon. Ado Audu Adarea, Waziri Kwande, Audu Dorzhi, Dr. Longman Godfrey Pensiwan as members while Pam Davou is to serve as the secretary.

The governor said that as a former local government chairman he is a firm believer in the effectiveness and efficacy of the local government administration.

He said that his belief stemmed from the fact it’s the only arm of government closer to the people.

He said, “The only way we can get government and governance closer to the people is to allow the people themselves to elect those who they want to lead them.”

Mutfwang said he had no option than to dissolve the former PLASIEC as it was illegally constituted by the previous administration.

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He said that the new members were care fully selected based on their track records, stressing that they came on board at a time when the Commission had a trust deficit.

“People no longer believe that state electoral commissions should exist. And they are even calling that they should be scrapped.

“I certainly don’t agree with that. Because we are operating a Federal system. Ours is a Federation. It’s not a unitary government. And if people are worried about allowing local government system to work,
they should also allow the states to function.

“So, the responsibility is yours. The ball is in your court. That you rise to the occasion and set out modalities for credible elections that even international organizations will have to come and monitor. So we are not joking about this.

“Our desire is to claim the global space, even though we are operating locally. So let me congratulate you and wish you a very successful tenure and hope that your names will be written in gold”, he noted.

Chishak, who spoke on behalf of his team, said they received the appointment with every sense of commitment to serve.

He assured the people to conduct a credible and transparent local government election by following due process and working within the rule of law.

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