THE Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to replicate same level of credibility used in its previous elections in Osun, Anambra and Ekiti during the 2023 general elections.
Mr Sam Udekwe, Chairman, NUJ, Enugu State Council made the call while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Enugu.
Udekwe said INEC should maintain higher degree of fairness, credibility and fairness as done during the isolated elections in Osun, Ekiti and Anambra, to ensure that people’s wishes counted in 2023 elections.
According to him, in the upcoming general elections in 2023, there are a lot of hope of higher credibility expected from the electoral body by the electorate.
“All over the world, elections are rated by some degrees of credibility and Nigeria is not exceptional.
“INEC recorded high credibility in their recent elections and I want them to employ same method to 2023 elections because there is improvement in the system,” he said.
He explained further that with the instrumentality of the electoral laws that had been enhanced with electronic inputs, it was going to be better, especially with the use of Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS).
“Where the rigging starts is from accreditation which BVAS has put a stop to an extent. I am hopeful we are going to have more credible, fairer and better elections in 2023.”
Udekwe, a staff of the Enugu State Broadcasting Service (ESBS), however, emphasised the need for INEC to decentralise Permanent Voters Card (PVC) collection offices/centres more, to allow people collect their PVCs without stress.
He said that INEC could develop a means of distributing the cards to people’s houses, stressing that the readiness of Nigerians’ participation in the forthcoming election was high and INEC should not be a stumbling block to it.
The chairman further advised Nigerians to collect their PVCs to vote candidates of their choice.
“I want to advise my fellow Nigerians to do away with exchange of money for their franchise, rather, vote who they believe will serve them better.
“It will be a colossal failure if we exchange our voting rights with peanuts but if anyone offers you money because there is hunger in the land, collect it and vote according to your conscience as it is going to be secret ballot system,” he advised. (NAN)