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Build on gains recorded in previous elections, Okei-Odumakin advises INEC




Dr Joe Okei-Odumakin, President, Campaign for Democracy, on Thursday called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to build on the achievements recorded in the Feb. 23 Presidential and National Assembly Elections.

Okei-Odumakin made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos, ahead of Saturday’s Governorship and Houses of Assembly Elections.

She said: “There were some noticeable improvements particularly on the part of INEC, considering its efficient deployment of materials and personnel for the elections.

“I will advise the commission to build on the gains witnessed in the conduct of those elections to ensure  perfect conduct on Saturday.

“Nigerians do not wish to witness setbacks.’’

Okei-Odumakin, an election observer, appealed to the political class to join hands to ensure smooth conduct of the polls.

She said that some members of the political class frustrated efforts of INEC and other stakeholders during Feb. 23 elections.

“ It is also quite unfortunate that the election witnessed misconduct by some security agents, who abdicated their responsibilities for political thugs.

“We wish this will not happen on Saturday,’’ Okei-Odumakin said.

The rights activist said that was the need to properly define the role of security agencies in elections.

She added that INEC would require more powers to enable it to deal with some of its challenges, especially those due to external influences.

Okei-Odumakin called for introduction of an advanced electronic option to improve voting and curb corruption in the electoral space.

NNN reports that 91 registered political parties will be contesting in the Governorship and Houses of Assembly Elections in 1, 558 constituencies in 774 local government areas of the federation.