The Commission of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has sent a solidarity message to Nigeria as the nation goes into elections to elect political office holders.
It called on political parties and their leaders to caution their followers against any acts or pronouncements capable of endangering the peaceful conduct of the elections.
The ECOWAS Commission, in a statement on Friday, said it was “acutely aware of the strategic importance of the 25h February, 2023 presidential election to the region and the African continent at large.”
The ECOWAS Commission commended Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, for his unrelentingg efforts to ensure smooth, free, fair, transparent and credible elections, noting the commendable work so far accomplished by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to prepare the electoral machinery for a hitch- free conduct of the polls.
The statement further read that: “While noting the highly competitive and tensed nature of the electoral campaigns, the Commission commends the leaders of all the political parties and their followers for ensuring a relatively peaceful environment for the electoral process. It further commends them for subscribing to the first and second Peace Accord, facilitated by the National Peace Committee.
“The Commission however notes the incidents of fake news, dis-information, misinformation and incitement on social media. It urges the political parties and their leaders to caution their followers
against any acts or pronouncements liable to endanger the peaceful conduct of the elections.”
ECOWAS also urged the electorate to conduct themselves with maturity and a sense of patriotism on Election Day, appearing to the security services to secure the environment for peaceful polls, while maintaining their neutrality.
The ECOWAS Commission encouraged the political parties and their leaders to accept the eventual outcome of the polls as will be announced by INEC and urged any aggrieved parties to seek redress
through laid down rules and regulations governing the electoral process.