PDP/ File

Kogi State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to put adequate security measure in place to avert electoral violence during the November governorship poll.

Concise News reports that PDP in a statement on Tuesday called on INEC to take “major” steps in preventing what the commission “disclosed is the high level of political violence raging in the state” by assuring a free, fair and credible governorship election in November.

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The statement read: “The PDP is giving the charge following the acceptance in a statement by INEC that it is worried by heavy political violence in the state ahead of the November governorship election.

“Recall that the Independent National Electoral Commission admitted that the November 16, 2019 governorship elections in Kogi and Bayelsa would be challenging due to the history of political violence in the two states.

“INEC’s National Commissioner and Chairman, Voter Education and Information, Festus Okoye, stated this during a live programme in Abuja but said the electoral umpire would move its personnel into the states early enough to meet with critical stakeholders towards achieving free, fair and credible polls.”

The statement added: “It is not difficult for INEC to track the perpetrators of political violence in the state. Just yesterday, protesting APC members at the National Secretariat were heavily beaten by sponsored thugs from the state, just as workers across some local government areas of the state who were protesting and asking for their full salaries, after being owed for several months were attacked and beaten by sponsored political thugs.

“The government-sponsored thugs have made the destruction of billboards of the PDP and APC governorship aspirants a daily occurrence and it is no longer news in the state on who is behind the violence, as every discerning mind and residents know those behind the political violence in the state.

“We are happy that even INEC is confirming the party’s outcry before, during and after the last General Election, about state-sponsored violence, witnessed in the state, in the February and March elections, which was not a democracy but guntocracy, as guns and intimidation were freely employed.”