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INEC holds Capacity Building Seminar for Newsmen ahead of July 16, 2022 Governorship elections

INEC Voter Education and Publicity, Mr. Victor Aluko.
INEC Voter Education and Publicity, Mr. Victor Aluko.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) empowered journalist and all media outlets in Osun State ahead of the Osun July 16, 2022 governorship election on the new innovations in the conduct of elections and the constitutional legal issues in the new electoral act 2022.

The theme of the Seminar was, “Capacity Building for Journalists” In Osogbo,Osun State.

The program took place at the Ideal Nest Hotel Osogbo, Osun State on July 2 2022.

The program started with The Resident Electoral Commissioner for Osun State, Prof. Abdulganiy Raji welcome address.

Prof Raji said there are 3,763 Polling Units and all of it are registered and accredited for the upcoming July 16, 2022 Gubernatorial election.

He also said that in Osun State, 11 jingles by INEC body are played either on Radio or other media outlets.

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Hon. Raji made it known that the Local Government INEC offices are filled with people seeking for the collections of their cards daily.

Explaining the incident which occured at the INEC office which was not brought to the public, he said that:

“We had three attacks where the Residents PVC were carted away but those who abscond with the cards were later apprehended and disciplined accordingly.

“We couldn’t recover all the cards as 41cards were missing, but to avoid not being able to account for the carted cards, we reprinted the cards and flagged off the stolen ones.

He then said the stolen cards won’t be useful on the day of election.

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According to Prof Raji, he said 3000 cards will be delivered to the INEC office tomorrow as the National Chairman will be the one to deliver the cards.

Speaking to the Journalist he said:

“We charge all Journalists to give us consideration in respect of advertising, charges and cooperation.

“I also appeal to the media’s to give us balanced news and not faceless news that will distract us from working, he added.

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The National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee (IVEC), Hon. Festus Okoye said that the year 2022 has been very busy for the commission as many vacancy are yet to be filled due to the resignation of some members.

Hon. Festus said that all registered political parties must field an eligible candidate with necessary credentials as
directed by the commission and if any party default on this directive,he will liable to pay a fine of N10 million.

He then went on to say that a political party cannot change or replace a candidate if name has been submitted to the commission except if the candidate withdraw or due to unprecedented death.

He also said that in the case of the candidate withdrawing, a new primary election must be conducted by the party and the candidate must write a Letter of Withdrawal with an Affidavit attached to it.

According to Hon. Festus, the commission will make available  buses, boat, gp tank and buckets and human carrier to carry or transport people to area that are not motorable.

The moment the election ends, the commission give an access code to candidate to the Nomination portal,
the greater use of technology has been very helpful, he said.

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Sensitizing the media on the need for election coverage he said:

“Reporting Election is a specialized area because new strategies  emerge everyday. A journalist covering election must be conversant with various strategies of the Electoral Act and Election Process as well as with the regulations and Guidelines of INEC

“A Journalist that is ignorant or does not understand the ingredients for reporting free and fair election is a danger to INEC, he said.

He further back up his statement,

“Accredited Media should be factual ,objective in reporting the Election. Journalist on no account should distract Presiding Officers in carrying out their duty. A Journalist must not contact a Presiding Officer in what is happening in a Poling Unit.

“No journalist is allowed to film Voters. The secrecy of the ballot is at the heart of the democratic process. Moreover, the media on no account should make a declaring or return in the election.

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He then charges all journalists to be versatile in the process of coverage.

HOD, Legal, Barr. Tunde Salako Speaking on Electoral Act 2022 and the election, said 2022 Electoral Act reviews the 2010 Electoral Act.

He said the 2010 Electoral Act banned the use of electronic device for accreditation and all process of election but the 2022 electoral act allows the use of technology and make provision for the nullification of candidates.

He then said the act allows the commission to suspend an already commenced election due to security intelligence.  

Vote of thanks was delivered by the INEC Director, Voter Education and Publicity, Mr. Victor Aluko.

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Written by Ruth Semilore

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