Election observer petitions INEC over Ekiti and Osun polls

Posted by News Express | 2 June 2014 | 3,451 times

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A Lagos rights group, the Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA Resource Centre), has petitioned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) over the rejection of its application to observe the forthcoming Ekiti and Osun polls.

The group in a petition to INEC Chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega, dated 26th May, 2014, wondered why it was screened out of the process despite its track record as an election observer.

Part of the petition said: “In response to your public newspaper advertorial and similar announcement on your website calling for registration of intending observer groups for the Ekiti and Osun States gubernatorial elections, we submitted an application form on 31st of March, 2014 to the appropriate office.

“However, on the 19th of May, 2014 INEC released the list of accredited observer groups for 2014 governorship elections in Ekiti and Osun states, and HEDA Resource Centre was not shortlisted despite the fact that we met all required conditions. More so, HEDA has remarkably participated in previous elections observation (within and outside Nigeria) in partnerships with other organizations such as Transition Monitoring Group (TMG), ECOWAS, CSO situation room, Independent Election Monitoring Groups and a host of others.”

HEDA requested INEC to “kindly furnish us with information on reason(s) responsible for refusing to list our organization amongst the accredited organization. This is necessary to uphold the values of transparency and accountability in governance and public life.”

I added: “We make this request in accordance with Sections1, 2 and 3 of Freedom of Information Act, 2011. HEDA look forward to your anticipated response within the stipulated 7 days from the receipt of this letter. Meanwhile we assure you of our commitment to work with INEC and all patriotic stakeholders to contribute our quota to the success of the elections.”

•Photo shows INEC Chairman, Attahiru Jega.

Source: News Express

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