The Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) is seriously concerned about the outcome of the gubernatorial elections in some states of the Federation.
CISLAC is particularly worried that elections in some states including Sokoto, Bauchi, Adamawa, Pleateau and Kano States are declared inconclusive.
The apparent disproportionate declaration of the state electoral outcomes by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), especially across the states whose results are declared inconclusive calls for concern.
While we express worries over the reported uncertainty and unusual delay that grip declaration of electoral results across the affected states some days after the elections, we call on the electoral body to uphold uniformity, equity and justice in the announcements to ensure free, fair and credible outcomes that will be acceptable to all.
We are surprised at the fragmented reaction by the electoral body towards the declaration of the outcome in the affected states, which is capable of heightening electoral distrust and apathy. The declaration of the elections inconclusive in some states should not be used as a means of subverting the popular will of the people.
In recent times, the electoral process has been heated with series of provocative statements, destructive arguments and negative utterances that can impair our national democracy, as observed in the emerging verbal attacks and derogatory statements trending among political parties rather than discourse on developments.
We, on this note, call for calmness, objectivity and total respect for the rule of law in response to issues to avert tension and situation that can exacerbate electoral violence across the country.
We are not unaware of the reported electoral violence with resultant killings and destruction of property as witnessed in some states, while we call on security agencies to ensure appropriate justice for arrested perpetrators and apprehend other suspects without fear or favour.
We find it unacceptable and an unwelcome development, persistent threats by violence mongers or political hoodlums working to hurt the unity, peace and stability of Nigeria. We condemn all manner of unguarded statements that have inimical impact on the corporate existence of the country or that ridicules the country’s image.
We, without reservation, reiterate our demand for the immediate arrest and prosecution of any person or group of persons threatening violence or instigating crisis of any form during and after the general elections.
We encourage INEC to maintain high level of integrity in the nation’s electoral process; and ensure pronouncements are made in accordance with rule of law, and not political sentiment.
We also call on the youths to never allow themselves be used by irresponsible politicians to create electoral violence.
Auwal Ibrahim Musa (Rafsanjani)
Executive Director, CISLAC