BY DAYO JOHNSON
AKURE – THE Civil society groups that observed the last Saturday governorship election in Ondo State have described it as the most credible election in the country in recent times but added, however, that the heavy presence of security personnel actually scared voters away.
They were unanimous in a communiqué issued after the election by saying that the election was peaceful and devoid of any malpractice.
The communiqué signed by represent- atives of five of the civil society groups accredited by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, however, comme- nded the stakeholders for their roles in the success of the election.
The members of the coalition are Reclaim Naija, Transition Monitoring Group, the National Association for Peaceful Election in Nigeria, the Centre for Human Rights and Ethics in Development and Justice and Equity Organisation.
Also, an Non- Governmental Organisation, NGO, Cleen Foundation in its preliminary findings on the conduct of the security officials during the election said that the election complied substantially with the Electoral Act 2010.
The interim report signed by Chinedu Yves Nwagu on behalf of the Foundation noted the need to train security personnel on crowd control as there were crises in some areas where there were large turnout of voters
The communique reads in part; “People were initially afraid of extreme thuggery with mercenaries from neighbouring states. This contention was, however, discarded in the minds of the people through our sensiti- sation and also assuring them of their safety, as security agents have been mobilised to take charge of any eventuality”.