INEC warns personnel against unethical practices ahead of Edo, Ondo Elections

 

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has underscored that the integrity of any election is largely dependent on the professionalism and competence of its officials.

INEC Chairman Mahmood Yakubu emphasized this while warning INEC personnel against unethical and corrupt practices in the forthcoming Edo and Ondo governorship elections.

Speaking on Monday in Abuja at a lecture in honor of the late Abubakar Momoh, former Director-General of the Electoral Institute (August 2013 – May 2017), Yakubu, represented by National Commissioner and Chairman of the Board of the Electoral Institute, Prof. Abdullahi Zuru, stated that any misconduct before, during, or after the elections would face serious legal repercussions.

The lecture, themed “Achieving Professionalism among Election Personnel through Effective Training in Preparation for the Edo and Ondo Governorship Elections,” stressed the importance of electoral officers adhering to principles of integrity, impartiality, transparency, professionalism, and sensitivity to gender and disability.

Yakubu highlighted the necessity for electoral personnel to be knowledgeable, skilled, and well-prepared to manage the complexities and challenges inherent in the electoral process.

“Moreover, the crucial role election personnel play in upholding the integrity of our democratic processes cannot be overstressed.

“The manner in which they discharge their duties and responsibilities affects the degree of confidence voters will have in the electoral process, which will impact their participation and turnout,’’ he said.

Yakubu said that to ensure credibility and trustworthiness in elections and build trust among the electorate, INEC had always prioritised the professional development of its election personnel.

He said the commission identified effective and efficient electoral training as the key to unlocking professionalism among election personnel.

“The commission’s involvement in effective training programmes has empowered its staff to uphold the highest standards of integrity and professionalism in order to strengthen our processes and procedures to serve the interests of all Nigerians,’’ he said.

He said that through training, INEC was able to deepen electoral knowledge and strengthen the skills and competencies of personnel over time.

The TEI director-general, Dr Sa’ad Idris, in his remarks, said that INEC, in pursuit of its mission and vision, had prioritised professionalism toward achieving free, credible, transparent and inclusive elections.

“As we prepare for the 2024 Edo and Ondo off-cycle governorship elections, the commission is assured that the outcome of effective training of Election personnel will manifest in a high level of professionalism.

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