By Marie-Therese Nanlong
Jos – Ahead of the 2023 elections, candidates of all political parties standing for governorship elections have been asked to commit that whoever emerges winner would create an enabling environment for development partners to be able to invest in the State.
This is part of an agenda-setting programme organized by the Plateau Peace Practitioners Network, PPPN, a coalition of non-governmental organizations working for the restoration of peace in the State.
The Chairman of PPPN, Mr. Pwakim Choji, who spoke at the event held in Jos advocated for Open Government Partnership, saying that although Plateau State had keyed into it, the impact is not felt as he urged whoever would succeed Governor Simon Lalong to look into this and fully participate in it.
He explained that Open Government Partnership is a framework that will enable a sitting Governor to walk out of office free without any court cases because it creates transparency and whoever is coming on board to leverage it.
Addressing the gubernatorial candidates of political parties as well as other participants, Choji noted, “Over the years, the people had less to say pre-election and post-elections. At this point, we would like to have an agenda setting where we listen to the politicians who want to govern the State in the next four years and we also tell them what our areas of interest are as well.”
He commended the establishment of the Plateau Peace Building Agency to encourage peaceful coexistence in local communities by the State government but added that the Agency needs to be funded and empowered to serve as a credible coordination platform where other local NGOs can collaborate to serve the purpose of ensuring lasting peace.
Some gubernatorial candidates present which included that of the People’s Democratic Party, Barr. Caleb Mutfwang, that of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Dr. Nentawe Yilwatda, that of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, Samuel Abashe and others presented their intentions for the people and promised to work with credible stakeholders to ensure a peaceful State.