As protest rocked the outcome of the local government elections in the Plateau state, Governor Simon Lalong has called for calm and enjoined citizens of the state not to do anything that may affect the peace of the state.
Even as the Civil Society groups accredited by the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission (PLASIEC) declared the elections free and fair and described the process as peaceful.
Lalong in a statement signed by the State Commissioner of Information and Communications, Mr. Yakubu Dati charged anyone who feels aggrieved over the result of the local government elections as announced by the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission, PLASEIC to tow the democratic path by approaching the local government elections petition tribunal to ventilate his or her grievances.
The Governor said the Local Government Election Appeals Tribunal were inaugurated even before the local government polls took place and implored the aggrieved people to take advantage of the Tribunal instead of resorting to act that could cause breach of peace.
He said as a Democrat, he cannot interfere in the work of PLASEIC being an independent institution, “PLASEIC is headed by credible leadership who are ready to make clarifications on the polls” adding that such should be directed to the body and not the governor.
Governor Lalong assured citizens of his administration’s commitment to peace, justice and fairness adding that in any context, there must be a winner and loser and therefore ask winners to be magnanimous in victory while losers should be humble in defeat.
According to the communiqué issued by the Civil Society collation led by Peter Nwoko, it commended the State electoral management body (PLASIEC) for their invaluable contribution and commitment to a transparent and credible process and also commended the state government for providing a level playing ground for all the parties to exercise their rights to choose leaders of their choice.
“It is necessary to ensure that elections comply with international best practices and globally acceptable standards, hence the essence of accrediting civil society organizations to observe any elections. The intention is to be able to access the degree of compliance of the electoral management body, political parties, and their supporters as well as security agencies to the relevant laws as provided by the constitution and electoral laws of the country.
”The Plateau State independent electoral commission (PLASIEC) obviously consolidating upon previous election significantly improved in their operations. We can safely state that all liaison officials deployed to their duty posts on schedule with the sensitive materials needed for the conduct of the polls.”