By G9ija

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has cautioned political parties and their supporters against violence, saying it could further complicate the security situation in the country.

Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, the Chairman, INEC said this at the Training of Master Trainers on Election Technology for the 2023 General Election on Tuesday in Abuja.

Yakubu expressed sadness over recent clashes among party supporters in some states, describing it as worrisome.
“Even as the commission is working hard to ensure a credible process in the forthcoming elections, reports of clashes among parties and their supporters in some states of the country during the ongoing electioneering campaign are worrisome.

“So too is the reported denial of access to public facilities for parties and candidates in some states of the federation.

“Let me caution parties and their supporters to focus on issues and steer clear of attacks on each other.

“These are not only violations of the Electoral Act, 2022, but also negate the voluntary commitment by all political parties and candidates to the letter and spirit of the peace accord signed about three weeks ago under the auspices of the National Peace Committee (NPC),” he said.

“Parties, candidates and their supporters should not by acts of commission or omission further complicate the prevailing security situation in the country.’’

The chairman said that a peaceful electioneering campaign was critical to the conduct of peaceful and credible election.

He said that INEC would continue to monitor the situation closely and would convene a meeting with leaders of political parties next week to discuss among other issues the imperative of peaceful campaigns and equal access to public facilities.

“In the same vein, the commission will also meet with the security agencies under the auspices of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) next week,” he said.