By Chinelo Obogo
The campaign council of Lagos State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) on Thursday, sensitised the electorate, traders, artisans and traders association on electoral laws and offences relating to conduct of election.
The sensitisation program organised by the APC and State Campaign Council SCC Directorate of Mobilisation at the Lagos State Television Blue Roof, Ikeja, Lagos, had in attendance market leaders, traders associations and artisans drawn from markets across the state.
Addressing the audience, Lagos APC chairman, Cornelius Ojelabi, said the program was organised mainly to educate the traders on the electoral laws and mode of voting, and how to vote using the newly introduced Bimodal Voters Accreditation System BVAS
According to him, “This is a continuation of our engagement with the people. We are educating them on the mode of voting in the forthcoming election.
“This is the first time we are using the BVAS, that is the reason we are sensitizing market men and women to know their roles and rights on the election day.
“We want to equip them to have pre-knowledge of what lies ahead of the election.
“We are encouraging our market leaders to talk to their members, children, friends and families to collect their PVCs because without it voting is not possible.”
Ojelabi said Governor Sanwo-Olu has put in place good governance in the state and that as the election day is fast approaching, the steps taken by the party are necessary.
The party chairman urged those who have not collected their Permanent Voters Cards to go for it, because the collection ends in the next three days. He admonish those who refused to collect their PVC.
“If anyone did not participate in this election, such person cannot openly complain about the government in power.
“I therefore urge us to talk to our children, friends and families on the need to collect their PVCs. “
Ojelabi urged the audience that, the logo of the party, which is a broom should be what they should look out for when voting.
Addressing journalists, Director, Mobilization, Lagos State Campaign Council, Maruf Akinderu-Fatai, said, “This is a way to indirectly reach out to the people at the grassroots. This is sensitization for the traders.”
He noted that the electorate needed to be educated because there is a new electoral law in place,moreso new voting system has been introduced. “We have the newly introduced BVAS. We are here to guide the electorate properly on how to ensure that all our votes count on the days of the elections.
“We shall be moving to the market soon to drive our mobilization efforts. We are focusing on February 25 and March 11. If you look around the state, you will see that everybody is going about the election process in a peaceful manner. We are not taking anything for granted.
“We are everywhere working with our candidates. As we are doing this, it is important to ensure that the people vote right and adhere to the electoral law which is why we are here sensitising the traders.”
Reeling out the electoral offences to the traders, Ademola Sadiq of the APC Directorate of Legal Services said unlawful possession of other people PVC, buying, selling or dealing in PVC is an offence punishable under the electoral law.
He said, “It is an offence punishable for any voter on the day of the election day to canvass for votes, solicit for votes or wear party symbol at the polling unit.
“No impersonation or under age voting. No abusive language, no to base, slanderous, intemperate, insinuations or innuendos or an attack on other political parties or candidates. No to physical force or coercion and thuggery. No to armed private security organisation or vanguard.
“Wilful destruction of ballot papers or result forms or ballot boxes or other election materials. Giving voter cards to another person for use at an election is an offence,” he said.