2019: Anambra collaborates with UN to champion credible elections in South-East
By Sunny A. David, Awka
As the 2019 general elections draws near, the Anambra State government in conjunction with the United Nations has taken the lead in ensuring peaceful, free, fair and credible elections in the South East Zone.
Key Stakeholders in the South East Geopolitical Zone held a round table interactive session for pre-election consultative meeting at the Governor’s Lodge, Amawbia.
Issues such as vote trading, non-issue based campaigns, equality of opportunities, apathy, recruitment of ad-hoc staff, internal democracy, high cost of elections in the country, among others were brought to the discussion table.
Stakeholders including INEC, South East Traditional Rulers Council, Service Chiefs, the Clergy, SSGs from the South East States, Media Heads, Heads of Service from all the States of the region, Anambra State Association of Town Unions, among others were in attendance.
In a remark, Governor Willie Obiano, while calling on the State citizenry to come out and vote to change the narrative of apathy, urged people to collect their permanent voter cards, saying that leaders must be held accountable by the masses.
Governor Obiano reiterated the imperativeness of adequate preparation during elections, and called for respect for the process as it is the only guarantee to engendering sustainable growth.
Mr. Mohammed Chambers representing the Secretary General of the United Nations West Africa and the Sahel said that the State has remained UN friendly, assuring of continued collaboration and commended State government for internalizing the SDGs into its governance framework, calling on stakeholders to play their role.
The member representing Anambra Central at the Senate, Senator Victor Umeh called for resistance to electoral brigandage, as elections remain the only means of enthroning leadership in a democratic setting.
Chief Umeh who lamented that credible elections has eluded the Country over time, said that people have in the past aspired to go into positions of leadership without following the process in utter disrespect of the laws as projected by the electoral umpire.
Speaking on behalf of South East Council of Traditional Rulers, Igwe Alfred Achebe who called for issue-based campaigns also spoke on creation of level playground for all.
The representative of the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner in the State, Mr. Ibeh Ibeh said that over one thousand PVCs are uncollected, assuring of plans by the Commission to raise the bar during the 2019 elections.
South East Governor’s Forum, National Youth Council the clergy, among others assured that they will all join hands to ensure a more credible general elections come 2019.
Presentation of a Media Partnership agreement formed high point of the event.