Edo Poll: INEC Wants Stakeholders’ Cooperation for Successful Governorship Election

Adibe Emenyonu in Benin-city

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) National Commissioner in charge of Planning, Monitoring and Strategy, Prof. Rhoda Gumus, has said that the commission needs the collaboration of all stakeholders to ensure the success of the September 21 governorship election in Edo State.

Prof. Gumus stated this yesterday at an Election Risk Management workshop for stakeholders in Benin, observing that election is a complex and enormous undertaking which cannot be done in isolation.

She noted that the idea behind the workshop is to expose participants to INEC electoral risk management, identity internal and external risk factor associated with the conduct of the election.

According to her, “The Electoral Risk Management sensitisation workshop seeks to expose participants to the INEC Electoral Risk Framework, identify internal and external risk factors that may be associated with the conduct of governorship election in the state and to develop mitigating strategies.

“The conduct of elections in every clime is a complex and enormous undertaking which cannot be done in isolation; it requires financial resources, wide variety of human expertise in diverse areas, varying layers of engagements, consultations, planning and eventual implementation.”

The commissioner added that: “The INEC is constitutionally saddled with the responsibility of conducting elections, so it unequivocally needs the cooperation of security management bodies and other relevant stakeholders to achieve the conduct of a successful election.

“The interplay of environmental dynamics is recognised as either negatively or positively impacting an election by security experts from all ideological spectrums; thus, implying that elections do not exist in a vacuum.

“Threats or risks that impede the successful conduct of elections emanate from the environment and are directly or indirectly linked to the legal, operational, technical, political, socio-economic and security situations prevailing in a country, peculiarly in transitional democracies.”

In addition, the National Commissioner in charge of Outreach and Partnership, Prof. Kunle Ajayi, said everyone must be concerned about security during elections and the prevention of security breaches by identifying flashpoints.

He noted that the commission has confidence in the security agencies to manage election risk/violence where it may occur, adding: “We know that the security agencies can use their expertise to provide adequate security before, during and after elections.”

On his part, the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner, Dr. Anugbum Onuoha, stated that the ability to manage risk during an election would lead to the conduct of a free, fair and credible election.

Also, the state Commissioner of Police, Funsho Adegboye, said his men are ready to provide adequate security on election day, noting that sensitisation of the police officers started long ago.

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