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Voters Rights call for election postponement over Army/IPOB crisis

By Nwabueze Okonkwo

VOTERS Rights International, VRI, a civil society group based in Onitsha, Anambra State, yesterday, called on the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to postpone the election from November 18 on account of what  it described as the lingering tension caused by the security operation against the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB.

In a press statement by its President, Barrister Jezie Ekejiuba, a human rights lawyer based in Onitsha, VRI reminded INEC that the Electoral Act gave the commission the leeway to postpone an election where it was envisaged that there would be a breakdown of the peace.

The group contended that there is reason to believe that a serious breach of the peace has really occurred to warrant the postponement, adding, “We consider what is happening in the South-East region (including Anambra State) today as constituting “other emergencies” and “cogent and verifiable reason.”

According Ekejiuba, “the attention of VRI has been drawn to a statement credited to INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC in Anambra State, Dr. Nkwachukwu Orji penultimate Thursday at Awka during a two-day workshop with Civil Society situation room in preparation for the Anambra governorship election fixed for November 18, 2017.”

While addressing the participants, the statement quoted Dr. Orji as saying that 35 candidates of political parties would participate in the November 18 governorship election. He added that the number does not include the candidates of political parties that held their primaries in the absence of the commission.

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Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka

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