Imo Guber: Yiaga Africa deploys 328 Observers, calls for credible election

Ahead of the Saturday Governorship election, a non governmental organization, Yiaga Africa has disclosed that it is mobilizing 328 local observers for the election to ensure that it’s free, fair and credible

This was made known during Media and Civil society Organisation round table discussion held in Owerri.

Speaking through its Director of programmes Cynthia Mbamalu, the Organization emphasized on the need for citizens participation in the elections to foster democracy and social inclusion.

She stated that the media and the CSOs should collaborate with Yiaga to sensitive the citizens about the electoral process and why it’s necessary for people to exercise their franchise. She disclosed that the stakeholders should also work in synergy towards restoring the electorate  confidence and trust in the electoral process and the umpire.

She stated that there is need for peoples votes to count during election, stating that the outcome of most Election in the country has increased voter apathy, and advocated for a correction of the anomaly.

Mbamalu further disclosed that Yiaga Africa Observers  will cover pre poll, during polls and post polls era as an Organisation that is  committed to the promotion of democratic governance and called on the Civil society groups to  also join as observers in the forthcoming off cycle Election.

She expressed concern over six identified volatile LGAs in the state where election might not take place  as well as over 38 polling units where INEC has marked not to participate in the Elections.

On his own part, Yiaga Africa programme Manager, Paul James while addressing the participants  identified some methodology which he disclosed are ideal in ensuring a transperant Election.

He noted that process and Results Verification for Transparency PRVT has over the time proven reliable as it was first used in Philippines. He stated that the method amongst others will deter fraud, expose, fraud and provide information. It will also remove uncertainty by verifying election results.

Most of the participants who took turns to speak expressed pessimism over the participation of the citizens in the guber Election as most people feel indifferent about casting votes because they believe that their votes do not count.

Some of the participants who witnessed and served as ad-hoc staff in the Elections expressed concern over the welfare of INEC ad-hoc staff during the Elections as they maintained that such poor welfare would give room for financial inducement of the staff by some elements.

Others were of the opinion that Election will not hold in the volatile areas such as Oguta and Orsu LGAs because of tinsecurity challenges as most of the dwellers have either deserted the area or afraid of losing their lives if they come out to exercise their franchise.

The participants seized the opportunity to inform Yiaga to keep watch over the 38 polling units twhere Election would not hold incase INEC announces results fronm such places.


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