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Stakeholders Press Soludo On LG Election Conduct

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An amalgamation of stakeholders in Anambra State, including civil society entities, political leaders, community elders, media personalities, and women’s advocacy groups, have issued a joint plea to Governor Professor Chukwuma Soludo, urging him to swiftly initiate the local government election process in the state.

Their request was made public during a focused engagement session facilitated by the Africa Centre for Leadership, Strategy and Development (Centre LSD) and Strengthening Transparency, Accountability in Governance and Electoral Process (STAGE), with the support of several civil society organizations.

Speaking to journalists during the event, Itia Otabor, the Director of Strategy at the Africa Centre for Leadership, Strategy and Development (Centre LSD), emphasized the purpose of their gathering, stating, “We are here to urge the governor to conduct local government elections in the state.”

“Indication shows that most Anambra people desire the conduct of local government election, instead what we have is renewal of transition committee for local government leadership every three months. This is against the constitution, so we hope that the governor will do what is needful.

“There are statutory matters that have to be done to show that there is hope about the conduct of the election. The first is the constitution of the SIEC (State Independent Electoral Commission).

“The local government election is a promise made by the governor and it is now for us to make him accountable to us and we need the support of the media.

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“We need to remind him of the things he promised. The governor does not need to come overnight and conduct it. He will first constitute the ANSIEC and he can relieve himself of the headache and send the names of the commission members, and they will begin to function.”

In his role as coordinator of the Anambra State Civil Society Network (ASCONET), Mr. Chris Azor commented on the situation, pointing out that the lack of local government elections in Anambra State is resulting in missed opportunities for the state to form partnerships with development stakeholders.

Azor said: “The world is waiting for Anambra State to hold local government election, and development partners have assured that they are coming in once this is done.

“No matter how you want to embellish it, caretaker committee is not known to law. Local government system needs to have elected leaders.”

He lamented the state of affairs, highlighting the fact that employees of the state’s electoral commission are receiving salaries despite not being engaged in any meaningful work.

He argued that it contradicts the principles of good governance to compensate workers for their inactivity when they could be utilized for the purpose of conducting local government elections.

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