…As INEC warns youths against violence***
Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo, has called on leaders and residents of Agbede community in Etsako West Local Government Area of the state to provide 10 hectares of land where a park for articulated vehicles will be built.
He said the decision was made to improve economic activities of the area.
The governor also promised to construct more roads and other infrastructural facilities to better the welfare and livelihood of the people.
Obaseki, who is the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the Edo Sept. 19, 2020 governorship election, gave the assurance during his re-election campaign rally in the region on Wednesday.
Addressing the party faithful in Ward 7, Agbede, the governor thanked the people for their support over the last three years and eight months, promising to sustain the development in the area if reelected.
Obaseki said: “This election is for our freedom. It is an election that will free us from selfish and self-centred politicians in the state”.
At Ward 6 in Jagbe, Obaseki commended the electorate for voting for him overwhelmingly in the last election, ensuring that he won all seven units in the ward.
He, however, reassured them that his administration would not relent in bringing more infrastructural projects to the area, especially roads.
He said: “I have done the designs of some of your important roads; we have started with the bridge and immediately we complete it, we will commence work on the roads.
“We have invested in the healthcare system in Edo; we have started the Edo Health Improvement Programme, where we have stable electricity, water and qualified health officers for our people.”
On his part, Chairman, Edo PDP Governorship Campaign Council, Dan Orbih, said that Obaseki had been a transparent man whose administration had done well for the state.
In another development, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Edo, Dr Johnson Alalibo, has warned the youth against violence during the September 19 governorship election in the state
He said that the warning to the youth was necessary so that INEC could deliver free, fair, credible and peaceful election in the state.
He stated this on Wednesday as a guest during the “Vote Not Fight Campaign,” programme organised by the National Democratic Institute (NDI) in Benin.
He disclosed that in the last one month, he had been making efforts to ensure smooth, credible and peaceful conduct of the poll.
“To promote democracy, we must promote peace. In Edo, we have started seeing untoward activities by political actors and operators.
“The youth are more vulnerable to be used for electoral violence. If we want free, fair, credible and peaceful election in Edo State on September 19, the youths must shun violence during the campaigns and the poll.
“The politicians should avoid offensive language in their jingles and campaigns. To deepen democracy, the election must be devoid of violence,” he said.
While commending the NDI for the programme aimed at ensuring a rancour-free election in Edo, Alalibo urged the security agencies and other stakeholders to continue to support the electoral commission.
Similarly, Mr Johnson Kokunmo, Edo Commissioner of Police, said that the INEC and security agencies were on hot seat to get the election right to promote democracy and move Nigeria forward.
Represented by the Assistant Commissioner in charge of the State’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID), Ayo Faniyan, Kokunmo solicited credible information about criminals and illegal activities from the public.
He, however, said that the Edo Police Command was ready for the election.
NDI Senior Programme Manager Mr Bem Aga, who pleaded with Nigerians, particularly Edo residents not to cause violence, stressed that the governorship election should not be seen as war.
The NDI chief said that there would not be development without peace and that nobody would benefit from violence.
He called on the public to refrain from hate speech, misinformation, disinformation and fake news that could lead to violence.
In his remarks, Executive Director of Connected Advocacy for Empowerment and Youth Development Initiative Israel Orekha noted that the organisation decided to partner NDI to ensure violence-free election in Edo.
In her speech, Edo Director of the National Orientation Agency (NOA), Mrs Grace Eseka, who was represented by the agency’s Assistant Director, Political/Civic, Ethics and Value, Mrs Ose Akhahon, noted that officials of NOA had been moving around the state to preach non-violence for a credible election.