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Kwara REC expresses concern over political violence in Ilorin



Mallam Garba Attahiru Madami

INEC Resident Electoral Commission (REC), in Kwara, Malam Garba Attahiru-Madami has expressed concern over the new spate of political violence in the state.

Madami, speaking at an interactive session with the traditional rulers in the state ahead of the 2019 general elections on Monday in Ilorin, appealed to the royal fathers to educate their subjects on the need to maintain peace during the elections.

He said he was worried about violence during political rallies because Kwara, as a state of harmony was noted for peaceful elections over the years.

The REC, in his opening remarks said royal fathers were brought together to rob minds on the coming general elections in the state.

“I want to appeal to royal fathers to go back to your domains and invite leaders of political parties and their supporters and talk to them about peace.

“We must conduct ourselves in a peaceful manner before, during and after the coming general elections.

“I am sad because our campaign in Kwara has become violence, in December, the news come to me that destruction of campaign billboards was rampart,” he lamented.

He appealed to the royal fathers as custodians of culture to talk to the people in their areas on the need to maintain peace and shun any form of violence during the elections.

Madami was of the view that if violence persists in the state during campaign, he wondered who the politicians rule over when they won elections, saying that politics should not be seen as do or die affairs.

The REC promised the people of the state of his readiness to organise a free, fair and credible elections in the state.

“At the end of this year’s elections, not only will the shareholders applaud it, but the international community will adjudge the election as the best in the country,” he added.

In his remarks, the Olomu of Omu-Aran, Oba Abdulraheem Oladele Adeoti commended INEC for the interactive session.

The Olomu appealed to INEC to organise similar interactive session in the local government levels attended by the Resident Commissioner or senior INEC official.

The royal father promised that he would do his best to sensitise and mobilise the people in his domain on the need to eschew violence during political campaigns.

Oba Adeoti commended INEC for the release of all Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVCs), promising to mobilise his subjects to collect theirs before the elections.

Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari, who was represented by the Daodu of Fufu, Alhaji Bello Muazu Alege called for the banning of house to house campaign in the state.

Alege was of the view that house to house campaign promotes violence because supporters of candidates normally clash during such campaign.

He also called on INEC to ensure that adequate provision of security men on election days to forestall violence.

Also speaking, Alhaji Idriss Saheed, Maku of Pategi, representing Etsu Patigi called on INEC to ensure adequate training of ad-hoc staff for the election.

He commended the Commission for the move made to curb vote buying by moving ballot boxes closer to the voting cubicle.

Maku of Patigi promised to carry the message to the Etsu Patigi particularly the voters’ apathy and violence.

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