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Media, CSO Stakeholders Inaugurate New Coalition To Track Nigeria’s General Elections

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Ahead of the forthcoming general elections in Nigeria, media and civil society stakeholders have launched a new  tracking group that will play the role of a watchdog over the conduct of the elections.

Dubbed, “Alliance for Deepening Democracy (A4DD)”, the group is a coalition of organizations from various sectors working collaboratively to engage critical aspects, stages and actors in this year’s general elections in order to ensure that its outcome reflects the will of the people and contributes to the consolidation of democracy in Nigeria.

This was disclosed by in a statement by the Chair of the Alliance Steering Committee, Mr. Edetaen Ojo, who is Executive Director of Media Rights Agenda (MRA); and its Vice Chair, Ms Hadiza Mrumun Garba, Communication Officer for the Women in Politics Forum.

The Alliance, according to the statement, intends to complement the work and activities of other coalitions and organizations engaging the electoral process and that its main focus would be to ensure that the elections are transparent, properly organized and conducted, secure, and credible, unlike the situation with many elections in the past.

“We do not want to wait until Election Day to find out that the preparations for the elections were poor or inadequate and that the outcome cannot be trusted.

“So we will engage and scrutinize all critical stages of the process and the preparatory activities of the main agencies involved in the conduct of the elections, particularly the Independent National Electoral Commission, before the elections, on election days and in the immediate post-election period”, the statement said.

It further explained that the Alliance will periodically and at different stages of the electoral process assess the state of preparedness for the elections and based on the outcome of its assessment, it will engage with INEC or other relevant actors in the process to advocate for necessary adjustments in plans or preparations as well as appropriate frameworks to ensure credible elections.

The assessment of the plans and preparations for the elections by the Alliance will cover things such as the printing of election materials like ballot papers, results sheets, etc.; the procurement of other election materials; logistics plans for the movement of election materials; plans for the deployment of election personnel; plans for the deployment of security personnel; plans for the collation of election results; the inclusiveness of the process in terms of how well it addresses the needs and interests of women, youths, persons with disabilities and other marginalized or vulnerable groups.

The statement added that the Alliance will engage with different stakeholder groups in the electoral process, including INEC, the Government, law enforcement and security agencies, the political parties, the Judiciary, local and international election observers, civil society organizations, the Media and professional bodies within the Media as well as citizens at large to ensure that each of them is playing its role effectively.

It also noted that the activities of the Alliance will be overseen by a representative six-member Steering Committee constituted from among member organizations of the Alliance to bring on board representatives of women, youths, persons with disabilities and other interest groups.

Member organizations of the Alliance include:  Media Rights Agenda (MRA), Rule of Law and Accountability Advocacy Centre (RULAAC), African Centre for Media and Information Literacy (AFRICMIL), Journalism and Development Seminars (JADES).

Others are, Proactive Gender Initiatives, Raising New Voices, Partners West Africa Nigeria (PWAN), Alliance for Credible Elections (ACE-Nigeria), Young Professionals in Policy and Development (YouPaD), Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), The Electoral Hub, and Women in Politics Forum (WIPF).

Short URL: https://www.africanexaminer.com/?p=85060

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