Insurgency in the North-East of the countrywill not stop elections from holding there next year, the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has said.
INEC Chairman, Prof Attahiru Jega, who earlier declared that election would not be conducted in any state under emergency rule in 2015, yesterday, said that he did not foreclose election in the six states of Adamawa, Taraba, Bauchi, Yobe, Borno and Gombe.
Making the position of the Commission known in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Kayode Idowu, Jega pointed out that INEC would conduct election in the affected states once the security challenge currently plaguing them was resolved.
“The point must be made that elections are being planned for all the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), as the commission hopes the security challenges presently being experienced in some North-East states will be resolved.
“INEC Chairman, Professor Attahiru Jega, did not foreclose election in these states as was reported recently in the media.
“At the Senate Forum where he spoke late in 2013, Professor Jega expressed the optimism as stated above; because it is common sense, anyway, that a state of emergency isn’t the best circumstance under which credible elections can be conducted.
“INEC is determined to make the 2015 elections and, indeed, the governorship as well as other elections to be conducted this year showpieces of Nigeria’s conformity with global best standards.
“But the Commission needs the cooperation of every stakeholder, especially the political class, to make this aspiration a reality.”
While boasting of measures put in place to ensure a watertight election in 2015, Jega said that the features would be such that it would be futile for anyone to try to snatch ballot boxes or attempt to engage in multiple voting.