The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has commenced peace advancing activities in Bayelsa and Kogi states to combat violence throughout the forthcoming elections in both states.
INEC’s national commissioner for Plateau, Niger and FCT, Professor Antonia Simbene, who revealed this said that the activities are needful as states are known for violence.
Simbene said: “We are expecting two difficult elections later this year in Kogi and Bayelsa states where we tend to be faced by election violence. In the case of one of the states, there are difficult terrains but in the other one, there is high level of violence and we are hoping to quell it before the elections.
“To this end, we are putting in place activities especially peace advancing activities to ensure that the kind of violence that we have experienced in the past do not come to play during the elections.
“There may be things we need to change and there may be things we need to sustain. We need to hear from our foot soldiers, the people who were actually in the field and know first hand the challenged they faced so that we can make improvement going forward.”
On his part, Professor Samuel Egwu, the Niger state Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), said that the commission has come up with an electoral cycle approach and that the body is permanently prepared for elections.
Meanwhile, we reported that INEC had announced that the Bayelsa and Kogi state governorship elections would hold November 16.
The commission had earlier scheduled the process for November 2. Legit.ng gathered that INEC director of voter education and publicity, Festus Okoye, said in a statement that the change in date was as a result of various appeals for the commission to reschedule the polls.