No fewer than 30 political parties have nominated candidates to contest the governorship election in Ondo State coming up November 26, 2016.
This was made known in Akure on Tuesday by the Resident Electoral Commissioner for the state, Olusegun Agbaje, at a press conference marking the start of campaign activities ahead of the election.
Mr. Agbaje said all the 30 political parties had concluded their primaries in a peaceful manner.
The parties are All Progressives Congress, (APC); Social Democratic Party,(SDP); Peoples Democratic Party(PDP); African People Alliance, (APA); Peoples Redemption Party,(PRP); Alliance for Democracy, (AD); Labour Party,(LP); Citizens Popular Party,(CPP); Peoples Party of Nigeria(PPN); Democratic Peoples Party,(DPP); Democratic Peoples Congress,(DPC) and New Nigeria Peoples Party,(NNPP).
Others include Hope Democratic Party,(HDP); National Unity Party,(NUP); Better Nigeria Progressive Party,(BNPP); Young Democratic Party,(YDP); Accord,(A); All Progressives Grand Alliance(APGA); Progressives Peoples Alliance(PPA); African Democratic Congress,(ADC); Action Alliance,(AA); Unity Party of Nigeria,(UPN) and KOWA Party(KP).
Peoples for Democratic Change(PDC); Independent Democrats,(ID); Allied Congress Party of Nigeria(ACPN); National Conscience Party(NCP); United Democratic Party,(UDP), United Progressives Party,(UPP) and Advanced Congress of Democrats,(ACD), were also listed.
Mr. Agbaje urged the parties to continue in their orderly conduct in the build up to the election.
“Going by the scheduled election timetable, party campaigns for the election have taken off and open politicking is gathering momentum,” he said.
“On this note, I wish to appeal to the political parties and politicians/contestants to exercise restraint in their pronouncements and avoid getting involved in verbal wars and inflammatory comments capable of igniting political tension and provoking rancour that could threaten the peace currently being enjoyed in the state.”
He said the parties should improve their standards of campaigns and should be violence-free.
According to Mr. Agbaje, the issue of inconclusive elections, which is not new in Nigeria, is due largely to violence, non-use of smart card readers and over-voting.
He said INEC would not deliberately scuttle an election and make it inconclusive after making the usual perfect preparations, considering the stress experienced by members of staff, coupled with the huge financial resources expended.
Meanwhile, a total of 331,075 PVCs are awaiting collection at the various collection centres in the state.
Mr. Agbaje said the number was out of a total of 1,531,771 received in the state, after a total of 1,200,693 PVCs were collected by their owners.
“As we speak, preparations for the smooth conduct of the election are ongoing as various stakeholders are already getting their acts together in readiness to play their roles in this very important election,” he added.