By Polycarp Auta
Jos, – As the 2019 general elections draw closer, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Tuesday promised to conduct free, fair, credible and peaceful polls in Plateau.
Malam Halilu Pai, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in the state, made the promise in Jos while declaring open a three-day workshop on Monitoring and Support Centre (EMSC), INEC organised for its officers in the 17 local government areas of the state.
“We are ready to conduct unbiased, credible, free, successful and peaceful elections in Plateau in 2019,” Pai said.
He said that the rationale for the workshop was to further equip its Electoral Officers (Eos) at the local levels with innovations that would enable them conduct credible polls in 2019.
The REC also that exercise would fine-tune and enhance the capacity of the officials in addressing challenges that might occur during the conduct of the elections.
“This workshop is meant to fine-tune and enhance our officers to identify, monitor and report challenges during the conduct of the elections.
“It is aimed at providing our officers with requisite skills to track and monitor election processes for easy coordination, efficiency and effectiveness.”
Pai further said the training would provide the officers with the needed knowledge and tools to control elections and swiftly respond to emergencies.
Earlier in his address of welcome, Mr Gbadamosi Abiodun, the Administrative Secretary of the Commission in the state said training and retraining of INEC staff had become a veritable tool to achieving successful polls.
According to him, the 2015 general elections have raised the bar for the conduct of elections in Nigeria, hence the need to deploy modern tools in actualising credible polls in 2019.
“The 2015 general elections have undoubtedly raised the bar for the conduct of elections in this country.
According to him, it is possible to improve the credibility, transparency and accountability of the 2019 elections with training and retraining of the members of staff of the commission.
Transparent could also be achieved with “careful planning, diligent and well thought-out elections process, development and appropriate resources”.
Abiodun said the workshop would avail the officials with the skills they needed in addressing challenges before, during and after the general elections.