Anambra Election: Group raises concern about voter awareness among youth, women

Ballot boxes used to illustrate the story.
Ballot boxes used to illustrate the story.

Despite the efforts of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, “voter education messages targeted at youth, women and persons with disability was minimal,” for Saturday’s governorship election in Anambra, a report states.

According to a pre-election report by YIAGA, a non-governmental organisation promoting democracy, constitutionalism and youth participation in Africa, “INEC’s effort to reach these target groups didn’t enjoy sufficient collaboration from other stakeholders like the National Orientation Agency.”

The concerns raised by the group may affect the voter turnout as current INEC data shows that over 50 per cent of the 2.2 million registered voters are women while over 40 per cent are students, most of them young people.

YIAGA, however, said its finding show that there is improved level of preparation by INEC in 92 per cent of the 21 local governments in the state.

It said it is concerned about some security issues “which are capable of undermining the credibility of the elections if not addressed.”

These include “public concerns about the level and extent of cooperation between INEC and security agencies, particularly the Nigerian Police,” it said calling for greater synergy.

“The integrity and credibility of the 2017 Governorship election in Anambra state could be threatened if election security is not guaranteed,” it said.

“The police and other security agencies should ensure security deployment is commiserate with level of threat (s).”

“It is also important that security deployment is in line with the principles of civility, professionalism and transparency.”

Read the full report here.

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