By Douglas Okoro
Abakaliki – Chief Jossy Eze, the Chairman, Ebonyi State Independent Electoral Commission (EBSIEC), says seven political parties are participating in the April 22 Ebonyi local government election.
He listed the parties as: African Democratic Congress (ADC), African People’s Alliance (APA) , Mega Progressives People’s Party (MPPP) , All Progressives Congress (APC), People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Social Democratic Party (SDP) and United Democratic Party (UDP).
Eze who spoke on Friday in Abakaliki while briefing journalists, said that the Commission had concluded every arrangement for the smooth conduct of the election.
According to him, the Commission has distributed non-sensitive electoral materials to the 13 local government areas of the state and accredited local and external election observers.
Eze who did not give a breakdown of the number of candidates fielded by each of the participating political parties, said that most of the parties fielded both chairmanship and councillorship candidates.
“All is set for the April 22 council elections in Ebonyi and we have no fewer than seven registered political parties vying for various positions in the election.
“The Commission will provide a level playing ground for all candidates as the election will be free, fair and credible.
“I urge all registered adult voters to go out and exercise their civic duty by voting for credible leaders.
“We assure the public that we remain unbiased, non-partisan and will be guided by the law and regulations stipulated by the Commission’s electoral guidelines in discharging the sacred mandate,’’ Eze said.
He warned that the Commission would take severe sanction against any electoral official found compromising the integrity of the election, by colluding with politicians to truncate the electoral process.
Eze said that ad-hoc staff were trained to man the over 1,075 polling units in the state.
He appealed for support and cooperation from stakeholders, including politicians, political parties, candidates, police and other security agencies to make the exercise violence free.