Cleen Foundation Urges INEC To Consolidate On Ekiti Poll Successes

Cleen Foundation a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) has urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to sustain the noticeable improvement in the Ekiti governorship election, ahead of 2023 poll.

Mrs Ruth Olofin, Acting Executive Director,  Cleen foundation said this in a post-election statement on the June 18 Ekiti governorship election in Abuja on Thursday.

Olofin urged INEC to also sustain its awareness creation and voter education campaigns, especially at community levels.

“Cleen foundation observed INEC’s ad hoc staff compliance with the use of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) which was widely used across all polling units.

“The foundation also observed that the INEC result portal received all the 2445 polling unit results which were accessible by the general public.

“And this reduced the tension and violence usually experienced at the collation centers in previous elections.

“So, we commend INEC for the noticeable improvement in the conduct of the Ekiti election, especially the near absence of logistics challenges that was a major issue in the conduct of other elections,” she said.

Olofin said that INEC staff and ad hoc officials were professional as they went about their duties with high sense of professionalism and responsibility which was laudable.

She said that they gave priorities to the elderly, pregnant women and Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) during voting.

This, she said was a step in the right direction toward meeting the needs of PWDs and complying with the provisions of the Electoral Act and the Discrimination Against Persons With Disabilities Prohibition Act 2018.

She advised INEC to ensure sustained improvement in the distribution of election materials in polling units in subsequent elections as this would contribute to instilling confidence in the process among voters.

“There is a need to sustain awareness creation and voters’ education especially in communities.

“INEC should ensure training and retraining of electoral officers to enable them meet up with the challenging needs of the electorate in Nigeria.

“Especially in understanding the provisions of the newly amended electoral act and other INEC legal frameworks and guidelines,” she said.

She called for the investigation and prosecution of all electoral offenders.

Olofin urged the National Orientation Agency (NOA) to ensure general awareness on the importance of civic participation by eligible citizens and the need to eschew vote trading by all actors involved.

She also called on INEC to maintain the level of synergy, partnership and professionalism shown in the Ekiti election, in the preparation of the 2023 General Elections.