The National Peace Commission (NPC) has warned Nigerians that low voter turnout would undermine the credibility of the 2023 election if no commitment is shown by the citizenry.
Newsonline reports that NPC lamented that only a fraction percentage of 34.75 voted in the 2019 general election, which it said was of great concern.
The Commission stated this in a statement signed by its Chairman, former Head of State Abdulsalami Abubakar and Convener, Rev. Dr. Matthew Kuka, Catholic Bishop of Sokoto after its meeting in Minna, Niger State after a meeting in preparation for Peace Accord for contesting candidates and political parties ahead of the 2023 election.
Part of the statement read, “Voter turnout is another area of concern. Just 34.75 percent of eligible Nigerians voted in 2019 and a similarly low, or lower turnout in 2023 would further undermine the credibility of the poll.”
According to the statement, the planned first peace accord for candidates for the 2023 general election will take place on the 28 of September.
This NPC said was to commit all political parties and presidential candidates and their spokespersons to a peaceful political campaign that is issue-based.
The duo said, “the first Peace Accord is slated to hold on 28th September 2022, at the International Conference Centre, Abuja while the second will hold shortly before the elections in 2023.
“The aim is to commit all political parties, presidential candidates and their spokesperson to peaceful political campaigns and rallies, devoid of violence, incitement and personal insults, but defined by issues at the very heart of national development and progress. The Peace Accord is also intended to commit candidates to accept the outcome of the votes as long as it is adjudged to be free, fair and credible.”
The NPC called on Nigerians, politicians, political parties, security agencies and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to ensure that Nigeria is placed first above regional and sectional claims.
It reminded Nigerians that ” the 2023 general election is more than an election, it is an opportunity to serve Nigeria, to defend Nigeria and to uphold her unity and progress. Nigerians should avoid the spread of fake news, and uphold the principles of tolerance, respect, civility and decency in all public and private conversations and engagements about the elections and the progress of Nigeria .“