The Town Hall meeting which had 150 persons representing the various groups in the Warri South LGA in attendance was held by AA PeaceWorks with funding support from Foundation for Partnership Initiatives in the Niger Delta (PIND) focused on sensitizing all stakeholders towards non-violence before, during and after the 2015 general elections in the LGA.
After the presentations on voter’s education; the role of citizens in ensuring violence free elections; and how stakeholders can work with INEC and security agencies to ensure violence free elections, participants noted that Warri South LGA is prone to election violence and the current trend is an indication that 2015 election could potentially be more violent than 2011 elections. The following resolutions were reached at the end of the meeting:
- Participants noted that late arrival of election materials at the polling units trigger crises in the previous elections and therefore called on INEC to ensure that all materials needed for the elections arrive on time in all polling units and that voting will commence as scheduled.
- INEC should discharge its functions effectively and ensure that election are truly free and fair as this is one of the best ways to achieve peace during and after elections. They also appealed to INEC to ensure that the card reader or any other means being adopted for accreditation is effective.
- Participants called on security agencies to provide a conducive and safe environment for the citizens to cast their votes and avoid harassing innocent citizens. They further appealed to INEC to make adequate preparation for security personnel during the elections.
- Participants vowed that they will shun violence and never allow themselves to be used for political violence; and to encourage family, friends and organizational members to do the same.
- Security agencies should be alive to their responsibilities of protecting lives and properties and should avoid being used to intimidate or to rig elections in favour of any party.
- They all adviced INEC to create enabling environment for all to collect their PVCs in other for them to exercise their franchise.
- They finally advice INEC to ensure that their vote counts and never to allow the security agencies to compromise with the politicians.
Rev. Adams O. Adjei
Chief Ipemu Thompson
Mr Taiwo Wuma
Mr Philip Ugbogu
Chief Arikunlyi Uweja
Mrs Patrician Ogor
Mr Akpebe Christopher
Mrs Shalomi Philo