By Bassey Inyang in Calabar
One time Presidential Adviser on National Assembly Matters, Senator Florence Ita-Giwa, has led an anti-election violence campaign in Calabar, Cross River State, urging youths in the state not to allow politicians armed them to perpetrate violence during the forthcoming 2019 general elections.
Ita-Giwa who led hundreds of youths in a rally from Henshaw Town in Calabar South, through some streets to African Club said that her effort was geared towards ensuring that youths do not endanger themselves, to the extent of dying for politicians, who will abandon them as soon as they are inaugurated into office.
Addressing the youths at the African Club, Ita-Giwa said aside from the essence of keeping them away from violence, the rally was staged to inform the youths about the disposition of Ayade to non-violent, free and fair elections in the state.
“We have a major campaign against violence especially in elections. An interesting thing is that all the different group of youths in the entire south have come together voluntarily to say they do no longer want violence associated with elections. “The reason why I called them is to advise them against allowing themselves to be use to do violence in the elections. These are people’s children; we should stop using and arming them to start shooting at each other. We should stop buying machete for them to machete each other. Calabar is a very historical clean town. We do not have bloodshed in Calabar. And these children have come out to volunteer to demonstrate against violence and have also promised that they will not let themselves to be used in election violence.”
Speaking on the attitude of Governor Ben Ayade as it concerns elections, Ita-Giwa said, “The governor of the state is a very peaceful man. Professor Ben Ayade is one of the governors that is scared of violence and bloodletting. He is a very peace-loving man. So, he is the last man to arm boys to go and shoot each other. I want my children to stay alive. I don’t want my children to go and give their lives for someone who will win elections and forget them.”
Ita-Giwa who pointed out that peace was very essential to the survival of the country urged the politicians not to arm youths to carry out acts of violence during the elections.
“Those planning violence should not try it. In their interest they should not try it. We need peace in Nigeria. We must stop using our children for bloodletting. You win election, you go and enjoy yourself, you stay in Government House or parliament and enjoy and don’t remember these boys anymore.
“We should make peaceful elections possible in Cross River State. It should be a peaceful election. We are not addressing anybody, we are addressing issues. I am here to ensure that Ayade returns for a second term because he is a man of peace, respects elders and recognizes the youths. All the youths that were going astray, he collected them and put in his government. No other governor can do that,” Ita-Giwa said.