The news making the rounds of the postponement of the Local Governments elections into the 57 Local Governments and Local Council Development Areas of the State has been debunked by the Chairman, Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission ( LASIEC ), Justice Ayotunde Phillips (Rtd) on Friday.
She emphasised that the elections would hold on Saturday, 22 July, 2017, as scheduled.
Phillips stated this during a meeting with Chairmen and Secretaries of political parties and candidates for the forthcoming Local Government elections in the State.
The Chairman added that preparations for the elections were being intensified as the Commission has just concluded the training of its electoral officers in collaboration with the International Foundation for Electoral Systems ( IFES ), an international organization which specialized in election management and administration.
She added that the electoral officers of the commission had in turn, also commenced the training of ad-hoc personnel whose names were compiled for the conduct of the elections in the various Local Governments and Local Council Development Areas of the State.
Phillips assured that the commission would “ go the extra mile towards ensuring that we live up to the expectations of Lagosians and even people outside the State who expect nothing, but the best from us as Election Managers at the Local Government level of the State”.
The chairman maintained that the commission would always do what was right and best for the people of the State, adding that as a former Chief Judge of the State, she had the responsibility of ensuring that the commission abide by any court order on the elections.
Responding to a question on the case instituted against the commission by one of the political parties, the Chairman declared that the commission “would have to go back to the drawing board “ if the court orders that card readers must be used for the conduct of the elections.
On the case instituted against the commission by the National Conscience Party (NCP), Phillips noted that the party failed to obtain nomination forms for its candidates, adding that the commission was awaiting the verdict of the court on the matter.
She, however, expressed concern over the current high level of acrimony in the political environment in the State, stressing that the commission was poised to eliminate any conduct likely to impede the electoral process and cast doubts on the integrity of the commission as an election management body.
While appealing to the leaders of political parties “to demonstrate commitment to democratic ideals by ensuring internal democracy, fairness and justice among their members and also purge themselves of the do –or –die mentality that has been the bane of the nation’s democratic adventure”, Phillips warned that the commission had enlisted the support of the police and other relevant security agencies to ensure maximum security before, during and after the elections.
In demonstrating the commitment of the commission to peaceful elections, the commission has directed candidates of all the political parties contesting for the elections to report at its Yaba headquarters from 12 noon on Monday, 17th July , 2017 to sign a Memorandum of Understanding that would guarantee that they would conduct themselves peacefully before, during and after the elections.
The meeting was also attended by the commissioners, permanent secretary and other senior officers of the commission.
Source: ( PM News )