Neutrality ensures hitch-free exercise
By Samuel Oyadongha – Yenagoa
A coalition of civil society organisations, Tuesday, hailed the Independent National Electoral; Commission (INEC) over its conduct of last Saturday National Assembly by-elections in the west and central senatorial districts of Bayelsa State saying electoral umpire neutrality and adequate provision of necessary logistics was the reason the polls were violent free.
Bayelsa west senatorial district comprises Sagbama and Ekeremor local government areas while the center is made up of Southern Ijaw, Yenagoa, and Kolokuma/Opokuma local government areas.
Speaking in Yenagoa, the coalition also described the conduct of the by-elections as free, fair, and credible.
Coordinator of the coalition, Amb. Chinyere Manukwem noted that INEC remained neutral in its conduct and provided the needed logistics support to guarantee transparent, violent-free, and credible elections, and the election was conducted in line with electoral laws.
Manukwem, who said the security agents were deployed at various polling units to ensure that the electorates were protected, however, observed that there was minimal violence in the two senatorial districts but not enough to undermine the integrity of the outcome.
She commended the electoral umpire for conducting free, fair, and credible elections and giving all political parties the level playing ground also applauded the security agencies for providing a secured and peaceful environment during the contest.
“The December 5th, 2020 Senatorial Bye-elections in Bayelsa West and Central Districts took place as scheduled in a conducive and peaceful atmosphere.
“We unequivocally adjudged the elections to be free, fair and credible and in tandem with the electoral laws,” she said.