INEC demands reports on general, supplementary elections from CSOs

INEC demands reports on general, supplementary elections from CSOs

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Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Professor Mahmoud Yakubu has expressed disaffection over the failure of Civil Society Organisations to submit reports of their observations in the course of monitoring general, supplementary and off-season elections.

The INEC Chairman raised his concern on Wednesday at a quarterly Consultative meeting with Civil Society Organisations.

Professor Yakubu who insisted that his Commission must mandatorily receive such reports, further cautioned that in subsequent elections, his Commission would not grant requests for election monitoring coming from CSOs that defaulted in submitting their reports.

He said:” I want to reassure you that INEC will continue to partner with Civil Society Organisations (CSOs). We appreciate the observations and recommendations contained in your election observation reports. Some of the reforms and innovations introduced by the Commission over the years draw from your observation reports. However, while many of you have submitted your reports, some accredited observers are yet to do so for the general election, supplementary elections, off-cycle elections, bye-elections and re-run elections. May I therefore seize this opportunity to remind those who are yet to submit their observation reports that it is mandatory to do so being one of the conditions for eligibility to observe future elections. Going forward, the Commission will operate strictly on the policy of “No Observation Report, No Accreditation”.

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The INEC Chairman equally urged the CSOs to show interest in primaries to be conducted by political parties in Ondo State ahead of the September governorship elections.

Professor Yakubu noted that “by doing so, you will strengthen your advocacy for inclusivity for groups such as women, youths and Persons with Disability (PwD) that are under-represented in elective offices at National and State level. involvement of the CSOs.”

Mrs Mufuliat Fijabi, Executive Director Sustainable Gender Action Initiative who spoke on behalf of his colleagues urged them to comply with the requests of the INEC chairman on their individual organisations observations in the course of monitoring elections.

“We also take very seriously the fact that the commission is still yet to receive reports from observation groups, especially from civil society organizations. And I’m quite optimistic that my colleagues here who have not already started turning in their reports, will expedite action to ensure that all pending reports are submitted for them to get permission and I also agree with the fact that to have a robust electoral process in Nigeria, feedback is very important from both EMBs and civil society organization for us to do better.

“And to also say that political parties are critical to elections in Nigeria, and it will be of great value to have four outcomes of primaries, especially for the two primaries that have recently been completed. So for this reason, I’m going to round off this point by saying that we will look forward for this kind of continued discussions around how to build on one another strengths in order to improve on our electoral process with the ultimate goal of deepening the democratic process that is truly inclusive and durable. “

NIGERIAN TRIBUNE


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