Sixteen governorship candidates and their party chairmen in Ilorin on Saturday signed a peace pact to maintain peace in the state before, during and after February general elections.
The signing of the Ilorin Accord tagged: ‘Anti-violence Pact’ took place at the state office of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, and presided over by the Resident Commissioner, Emmanuel Onucheyo.
Speaking at the occasion, Mr. Onucheyo said Kwara was the first state in the country to take a cue from the Abuja Accord among the presidential candidates.
The 16 governorship flag-bearers were Simeon Ajibola, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Abdulfatah Ahmed, All Progressives Congress (APC), Oyewumi Ajibola, Action Alliance (AA) and Comfort Kayode, United Progressive Party (UPP).
Others were Musa Kolawole (AD), Alabi Morakinyo for Kowa Party, Oshin David (UDP), Alabi Kolawole for SDP, Babatunde Tayo (MPPP), Dr Mike Omotosho (LP) and Tiamiyu Kamarudeen (PPA).
The rest were Adigun Adewale (PPN), Ayinla Oloruntoba, (NCP), Bamidele Omotosho (CPP) and Abraham Babatunde (ACPN).
All the 16 governorship candidates promised to run issue-based campaigns at the state and local government levels.
They also promised to refrain from campaigns that would involve religious, ethnic or tribal sentiments.
They pledged not to make any public statement, pronouncement, declaration or speeches that could incite violence, before, during and after the elections.
The candidates also resolved to speak out against provocative utterances and oppose all acts of electoral violence, whether perpetrated by their supporters and or opponents.
They promised to commit themselves and their political parties to monitor the adherence of the peace accord, and if necessary by a state peace committee.
The PDP governorship flag bearer, Mr. Ajibola, who spoke after signing the peace pact, commended the heads of security agencies for initiating the peace accord.
According to Mr. Ajibola, peace is a friend of all, adding that much could be accomplished under a peaceful atmosphere.
He appealed to all the candidates and leaders of political parties to take the message of the peace accord to their members across the state.
Mr. Ahmed, the state governor and APC governorship candidate, gave assurance that his party would abide by the peace accord.
The governor, who expressed his commitment to a peaceful environment, suggested that the peace accord should be extended to the local government areas.
In her remark, Action Alliance governorship candidate, Mrs. Ajibola, said as a mother and a candidate, she was the most grateful for the accord.
She called on the umpires to also sign an accord to be faithful and unbiased during the general elections. (NAN)