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60 women-observers for poll

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The Women’s Situation Room Nigeria (WSRN) has deployed 60 women observers in the 16 local government areas of Ekiti to monitor Saturday’s governorship election.

National Coordinator Prof. Philomena Zamani, at a news conference yesterday in Ado-Ekiti, said the women-observers, in collaboration with United Nations Women and the government of Canada, are expected to observe the elections from a gender-based perspective.

She said the group, especially during elections, usually insist on inclusion and participation of women, transparency of the process and prevention of violence against women.

The coordinator said the election would provide an opportunity for assessing the implementation of the new Electoral Act.

She added: “More so, it will be the second governorship election to be conducted using the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System. The election will also serve as a litmus test to assess the role of security agencies, commitment of political parties to electoral integrity, stakeholders’ engagement and citizens’ participation, ahead of the 2023 general elections.”

Zamani also expressed her delight with the peace pact signed by the candidates, saying it would go a long way to reduce tension across arising from the election. She added that the group had also organised advocacy visits to relevant stakeholders on how to build strategic partnerships, especially as the election drew nearer.

According to her, the group has identified some flash points in the state through incident reports received through its toll-free lines and rapid assessments conducted through various media reports. She listed some of the flash points as Ikere, Ado-Ekiti, Ido-Osi Omuo, Efon Alaye and Ilupeju.

Zamani also hailed women in the state for achieving 71 per cent record in the collection of Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs).

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