A charity organisation, the National Association of Seadogs (NAS), also known as Pyrates’ Confraternity, Abuja City Centre, has appealed to politicians and other stakeholders to avoid acts that trigger violence and “play by the rules of the game”.
The call, contained in a statement signed by Mr Ugochukwu Nwodo, Capoon, NAS Sahara Deck, is coming ahead of the Nov. 16 gubernatorial elections in Kogi.
Nwodo said that election was “entirely a civil affair that requires citizens to exercise their franchise as provided for in the constitution and guidelines for elections”.
“Violence and all forms of thuggery, intimidation and chaos should not have a place in the 21st-century electoral process.”
He also urged security agencies to ensure that the electorate in the state was freely allowed to exercise the right to vote in a violence-free environment and without fear of any reprisals.
Furthermore, he called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to play the role of “a fair umpire”.
He urged INEC to ensure free, fair and credible election which should also be “generally seen to be so by all concerned”.
He assured of the group’s commitment to all efforts geared towards ensuring that “our electoral processes are strengthened and devoid of violence”.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that INEC, in May, had announced a new date for the governorship elections in Kogi and Bayelsa from Nov. 2 to Nov. 16.
The commission said the change in date followed several appeals from Bayelsa that the election date coincided with the state’s Annual Thanksgiving Day which is backed by law.