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Friday, 8 March 2019

DON'T LET ANYONE INFLUENCE YOUR VOTES – CAN

AS Nigerians prepare to elect their state governors and lawmakers today, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has urged the people to vote for only candidates their consciences direct them to give their ballots.

Officials count votes in front of voters during the presidential and parliamentary elections on February 23, 2019, at a polling station in Port Harcourt, southern Nigeria. – Nigerians began voting for a new president on February 23, after a week-long delay that has raised political tempers, sparked conspiracy claims and stoked fears of violence. Some 120,000 polling stations began opening from 0700 GMT, although there were indications of a delay in the delivery of some materials and deployment of staff, AFP reporters said. (Photo AFP) This advice was given on Friday night in a statement by the CAN President, Revd. Samson Ayokunle, calling for free, fair, and credible state elections. He said: “Saturday is the Governorship and State Assembly polls nationwide, with the exception of few states.


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“All eligible voters with their Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) should come out enmasse to exercise their inalienable rights without any fear of being intimidated. “Let them vote according to their conscience. Not to vote is to allow the wrong candidates to occupy the position of leadership they did not deserve.” He called on all politicians, security agencies, and the officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to ensure a peaceful atmosphere before, during and after the election. “Our politicians should avoid rigging, violence, vote buying, ballot box snatching and other electoral offences; our security operatives, especially the Police and the Army, must operate within the ambit of the law, while our youths should resist the temptation of being used to foment troubles. “CAN urges all INEC officials and the security operatives involved in the conduct of the polls to remain impartial and apolitical before, during and after the poll.” Ayokunle decried the performance of INEC in the presidential polls, saying the second phase of the general election should be better than the previous. “We task them to ensure that the collation of results is free, fair, transparent, and accessible to all stakeholders. It is high time we told the whole world that our democracy has come of age,” he stressed.

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