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Yiaga Africa laments voter inducement ahead of guber election

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Ahead of the Edo State governorship election tomorrow, Yiaga Africa has expressed concern over alleged voters inducement by the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at the expense of issues-based politics.

Speaking at Yiaga Africa Watch The Vote (WTV) media briefing in Benin City, yesterday, Chairman of Yiaga Africa Watching the Vote Edo 2020 Observation Mission, Dr. Aisha Abdullahi Umar, said the group was fully prepared to observe the election.

She said all 500 Parallel Vote Tabulation (PVT) observers were currently sending in practice reports based on the elections day scenario.

Abdullahi expressed disappointment at the activities of the political parties particularly the APC and PDP, alleging that both parties were distributing money and gift items to swing voters in their favour.

Her words: “Since Yiaga Africa commenced the Pre-Election Observation (PREO) in July 2020, voters inducement has been a recurring decimal.

“During the period, Long Term Observers (LTOs) reported incidences of voters inducement at Igueben, Oredo, Ikpoba-Okha, Etsako Central, Owan West, Ovia South West, Egor, Ovia North East, Esan West and Esan South East council areas during campaign rallies.

“Yiaga Africa is ready to observe the election on behalf of Edo people and Nigerians to ensure that their votes are accurately counted.

“We call on all Edo people, the political parties and candidates, the Independent Electoral National Commission (INEC) and security agencies to play their part to ensure peaceful, credible and conclusive process,” she said.

Meanwhile, the Africa Network for Environmental and Economic Justice (ANEEJ) also expressed concern over non-commitment of politicians to stem the tide of irregular migration among Edo citizens in their manifestoes ahead of the poll.

Briefing journalists in Benin City, Deputy Executive Director of ANEEJ, Leo Atakpo, said the campaigns for the September 19, 2020 Governorship election had left important issues unaddressed, particularly on irregular migration of Edo youths.

He urged government and other stakeholders to improve the state’s civic engagement for accountability and transparency and implement government policies to adequately address irregular migration, among others.

“The candidates and political parties in the election need to give the challenge of migration the attention it deserves as a priority issue. In doing so, it is imperative that they demonstrate how their policies and programmes would be directed towards achieving a holistic approach in dealing with the issue of migration in Edo,” Atakpo said.


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