KWASIEC Boss: Why Commission Shifted Councils Poll to Nov 18

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Hammed Shittu in Ilorin

The Kwara State Chairman of the Independent Electoral Commission (KWASEIC), Dr. Uthman Ajidagba, thursday said the commission decided to shift the conduct of the forthcoming local government council polls in the state to November 18 instead of November 4, to allow all stakeholders in the election to participate in the council polls.

Speaking at a news conference in Ilorin, Ajidagba said the shifting of the council polls would also allow people who had travelled out for this years haji operations in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to have the chance of participating.

According to him, “You will recall that a proclamation was issued on July 31, 2017 on local government council elections in accordance with the provisions of the extant laws.”

He said: “You will equally remember that I did brief you on the preparedness of the commission to conduct free, fair, transparent, peaceful and credible elections in the 16 local government area in the state.

“However, shortly after the proclamation, my commission was awash with emissaries from stakeholders, including individual electorate, pleading with the commission to consider the interest of our Muslim brothers and sisters who are presently in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia performing one of their religious obligations.

“After listening to all the submissions, and in line with our promise to conduct a free, fair and credible elections, the commission came to a conclusion that to be fair to all and sundry and to give room for all-inclusive elections, there is the need to adjust our programme of activities.

“In view of this, the commission is constrained to adjust its election timetable, particularly as it affects primary of the parties but which in effect has affected the earlier date slated for election.”
Ajidagba also stated further that the commission has requested all the registered political parties to participate in the election without any preference for any political parties.

He said: “I want to call on all registered political parties to participate in the forthcoming local government councils poll in Kwara because the commission would provide a level playing ground for all the parties to vie for any councillorship and chairmanship positions in all the 16 local government councils of the state without any fear of favour.”

The chairman therefore called on the people of the state to support the commission in the task of conducting a free and fair councils poll in the state so as to bring new lease of life to the people of the grassroots.