ECOWAS: Accept election shift in good faith, ECOWAS tells Nigerians

Lagos, Nigeria (PANA) - ECOWAS has urged political actors in Nigeria to respect the decision by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to postpone the country's general elections by six weeks.

INEC chief Attahiru Jega announced the shift on Saturday, saying it followed the letter he received from the nation's security chiefs that they could not guarantee security for the elections as scheduled, due to ongoing security operations against the terror group Boko Haram.

Consequently, he said national and state elections earlier scheduled for 14 and 28 Feb. would now hold 28 March and 11 April, respectively.

In a statement made available to PANA here Monday, ECOWAS said: ''While noting the concerns and disappointment of Nigerians and all other stakeholders occasioned by this postponement, ECOWAS calls on all political actors to respect the decision by INEC and accept it in good faith.''

The 15-member regional bloc also called on the Nigerian Security Services to remain dedicated towards restoring normalcy in the North-East, which is the hotbed of the insurgency.

ECOWAS urged INEC to take advantage of the postponement to complete all pre-election arrangements, particularly the distribution of Permanent Voter Cards (PVC), in order to ensure free and credible elections.

It also underscores the need for the respect of the Constitution and seizes and urged all political stakeholders to refrain from any utterances and speeches that may incite their supporters or opponents to violence.

The postponement has attracted widespread condemnation within and outside Nigeria.
-0- PANA SEG 9Feb2015

09 february 2015 13:26:37




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