LG Poll: OPCI seeks its conduct by INEC

  • says State Independent Electoral Commissions are tools in Govs’ hands

Stephen Olufemi Oni, Ilorin

The Oodua Progressive Care Initiative (OPCI) has called on the Federal Government to take immediate action to ensure the integrity of local government elections in the country by banning State Independent Electoral Commissions (SIECs) and tasking the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) with the conduct of these elections.

According to a statement by the President of the group, Dr. Maruff Olarewaju, the current arrangement where SIECs are responsible for conducting local government elections has led to rampant manipulation and abuse of power by state governors, who, it said, use these commissions to serve their selfish interests.

“The result is a string of flawed elections that have undermined the credibility of our democratic process,” said OPCI’s President,

“It’s time for the Federal Government to step in and ensure that local government elections are free, fair, and acceptable to all.

“SIECs are often staffed by appointees of state governors, who use these commissions to perpetuate their hold on power. This has led to a situation where opposition parties and independent candidates are often denied a level playing field, and voters are disenfranchised.

“In contrast, INEC has a proven track record of conducting credible elections, and we believe that entrusting it with the responsibility of conducting local government elections will help to restore the integrity of our democratic process,” Dr
Maruff said.

The OPCI called on the Federal Government to take immediate action to ban SIECs and empower INEC to conduct local government elections_ adding that “this is a critical step towards deepening our democracy and ensuring that power is returned to the people.

“We urge all Nigerians to join us in this call for electoral reform. Together, we can build a democracy that is truly representative of the will of the people.

Moreover, we sincerely thank the “Federal Government and National Assembly on the autonomy of all 774 local government, this will go along way to in delivering the purpose and gains of democracy to grass roots.’


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