CSOs task South-East govs to give voters confidence ahead of elections

As the general elections approach, some stakeholders, including civil rights organizations, have charged Igbo political leaders with speaking out about the rising insecurity in the South-East region, which has the potential to affect the zone’s elections.

They specifically urged the South East governors, who serve as the region’s chief security officers, to be bold and confront the region’s security crisis head on.

Speaking at the South East Stakeholders Meeting, held in Enugu by the Centre for Transparency Advocacy, in preparation for the 2023 general elections, they emphasized the importance of having good security in the zone so that the people of the region can vote with confidence.

“My concern on the preparation is security. I want to know the position of the South East governors in terms of insecurity. We have a peculiar situation which should be a bit easy to solve because the South East problem is peculiar to the South East and the governors have a key role to play; they are the chief security officers.

“We have heard from the security agents, they are doing what they can do. We hear many times INEC saying, go about, everything is safe, but the question we are asking is what are our five governors doing? If they are doing anything and if those of us who are enlightened don’t know who will know, is it the man on the street that will know?

“As the chief security officers who have security votes, yes they could be supporting security agencies, but people want to hear what their position is. They must give the people the confidence to come out and vote.

“We know that insecurity affected the states like Anambra and Imo, in the last voters’ registration exercise, now insecurity might go a long way to disenfranchise the people even on that election day because somebody could be money and he goes on social media to say there is sit-at-home on election day. What are we going to do?

“If our governors don’t start taking a stand now, and not just taking a stand-alone, we should have a situation where the security agents, INEC and our governors are saying the same thing at the same time.

“I suggest that they should be talking to the people every two weeks until the elections to give them confidence, there should be press conferences to tell the people, this is where we are. People want good governance but you have to be alive to have good governance,” one of the participants, Dr. Charles Ukauwa of Abia Governance Network said.

 

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