Delta politicians sign peace accord •Uduaghan stresses need for violence-free campaigns and polls

Posted by News Express | 12 February 2015 | 3,308 times

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Delta State Governor, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan, has said that the peace accord entered into by politicians should be respected for a violence-free electioneering process to be achieved.

Dr Uduaghan made the call yesterday when candidates for different elective positions of political parties in Delta State signed a peace accord in the capital, Asaba. He stated that peace accords should not be for formalities but should be honoured in the interest of democracy.

The peace accord was packaged by the Delta State Police Command to ensure peace before, during and after the general elections.

“If all of us present in this hall decide that these elections should be violence-free, they will be violence-free. We are signing a document today for violence-free elections, it should not just be ceremonial, we must act with the document,” the Governor said. He urged the police and other security agencies in the state to ensure full compliance with the signed agreement.

While commending politicians in the state for the mature way they have conducted themselves so far, the Uduaghan stressed the need for politicians to conduct themselves well during and after the elections.

He commended the police for making it possible for candidates for elective positions and their political parties to sign the violence-free elections accord, observing: “This event is very key to the success of the 2015 general elections.

“We need peaceful elections, no position is worth dying for, eight years is very short, four years is even shorter and you are in the field again, it is not necessary to go to the extent of engaging in violence.”

The Governor described the shift in dates of the elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as laudable, saying: “Some people are not happy but a lot of people are happy.”

He urged spiritual leaders, journalists, retired military men, among others to engage in actions which would engender peaceful electioneering process.

Speaking at the occasion, the Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Zone 5, Mr Musa Daura, said it was important for peaceful elections to be achieved, emphasising that “we must all be in the vanguard for a credible and acceptable electoral process.

He said: “We have resolved to provide an electoral environment free of intimidation and politicians should play the game by the rules bearing in mind that politicians are sportsmen. We should shun criminal and electoral violence before, during and after the elections.”

Harping on the need for peace, the Bishop of Asaba Diocese of the Anglican Communion, Rt. Rev. Justus Mogekwu, urged politicians to imbibe the virtue of humility and avoid acts of desperation in their quest to achieving their political ambitions.

On his part, the Resident Electoral Commissioner of INEC in the state, Elder Aniedi Ikoiwak, said despite the shift in dates for the elections, “we will deliver a credible election not only in Delta but Nigeria.”

The Commissioner of Police in the state, Mr Alkali Baba Usman, in an address, said that politicians must not only agree but equally realise the need to be more democratic in the conduct of political activities within the ambit of the law with a view to ensuring peace, understanding and respect for one another.

“The Command’s posture is that of zero tolerance to political violence under whatever guise; the Command is committed and poised to provide violence-free environment for all peace loving Nigerians/foreign nationalities resident in Delta State before during and after the general elections,” he stated.

Continuing, Usman said: “To this end, the Command has put in place special investigation teams to investigate and prosecute all infractions on the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) in conjunction with the INEC and of course all extant laws in force.

“Parents and guardians alike should warn their children/wards against being used as a veritable instrument to create confusion in the state as the full wrath of the law will be made to bear on such errant individuals or group of persons along with their sponsors.”

Photo shows Governor Uduaghan.

Source: News Express

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