By James Ibechi
“Benue people would respect results of elections because it was the result of credible elections that brought this administration on board.”
Those were the words of Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue state while pledging to support and partner the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to ensure the conduct of free and fair elections in 2019.
Governor Ortom made the pledge on Friday while receiving the new Benue State Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Dr. Nentawe Yilwatda in Makurdi.
The governor said his government would not do anything that could truncate electoral process in the state. He directed the Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Lawrence Onoja (jnr), to mount an enlightenment programme on the need for the people to participate in the ongoing voters registration exercise. Ortom appealed to churches, traditional institutions and social groups to sensitise the people on the need for them to register, explaining that only voting cards could be used by the people to bring in people of high integrity into offices.
He, however, cautioned that “registration at ward levels may not be smooth if INEC does not consider the establishment of registration centers close to the people.”
Earlier, Dr. Yilwatda said the electoral body had made it possible for internally displaced persons to move their voting points to their new places of abode.
He assured that INEC would conduct free and credible elections in the state advising aggrieved persons to always seek legal redress to issues relating to irregularities instead of resorting to violence or destruction of INEC offices or property.