The Benue State Independent Electoral Commission (BESIEC) has fixed 30th November 2019 for the Local Government Council elections in the state.
It was gathered on Sunday that in view of the Commission’s plan to hold the election, it may release the timetable and guidelines and for the elections within the week.
The decision to release the guidelines and timetable for the elections is in accordance with Section 152 of the States Independent Electoral Commission (SIEC) Establishment Law, 2012 as amended, which stipulates that the given time period for elections to hold in the Councils should not be less than 21 days.
It was also gathered that BESIEC would be meeting with all the political parties, security agencies and other relevant stakeholders in the state; at a stakeholders’ meeting on modalities for the elections.
According to our findings, BESIEC may come out with the guidelines and timetable for the elections shortly after the stakeholders meeting billed to hold later today (Monday)
BESIEC Chairman Tersoo Loko who confirmed the report however stated that the Commission would stick to the 30th November date for the conduct of the elections.
He noted that “We have totally agreed on 30th November to be the date for the conduct of the local government polls and His Excellency the state Governor, Samuel Ortom as an adherent advocate of democracy has also agreed that we will keep to that date. So we are going to keep to that date, when local government polls are going to be conducted.”
Loko explained that due to the mistrust that has trailed previous occasioned, the Commission has plans to visit all political parties in the state, in order to restore confidence in political parties as well as the electorate.
The BESIEC boss said “It’s on that premise that we have decided to hold a stakeholder meeting tomorrow (Monday) so that all the political parties will come together to enable us to discuss and crave their indulgence to get integrated in the entire process.
“And after the stakeholders’ meeting, the Commission plans to engage in a tour of offices of all political parties in the state as part of confidence-building efforts.
“The meeting is aimed at restoring confidence in the populace and looking at the modalities to integrate all the political parties, security agencies and other relevant stakeholders to ensure they come together to achieve free and fair local government polls in the state and also ensure them of a level playing field.”