The National Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) has pledged to conduct credible elections in Ekiti and Osun in 2018. Mr Adedeji Soyebi, the INEC National Commissioner for SouthWest Zone, made the pledge while speaking with newsmen on Wednesday at the Zonal Strategic Plan Retreat for field officers of the commission in Ibadan.
Soyebi said the previous polls had been successful, adding that “any election conducted this year or other time will not be an exception.’’
“It will based on the principle we have used in conducting elections. “ INEC will build on its various achievements in the conduct of free, fair and credible elections and make sure that there is tremendous improvement in the future elections, “ Soyebi said.
The commissioner said the Zonal Strategic Plan was aimed at generating ideas and inputs from electoral officers on the field before embarking on any national plan in readiness for the 2019 elections.
“At the end of the retreat, a synthetic report will be ready which the commission will present at a national stakeholders meeting involving political parties, civil society organisations, security apparatus and other stakeholders in the conduct of elections,’’ he said Soyebi urged the participants to make meaningful contributions that would play vital roles in assisting the commission to be more effective.
Earlier in his address of welcome, Mr Ariyo Ayoola, the Acting Administrative Secretary of INEC in Oyo State, said the commission would develop a new strategic plan.
According to Ariyo, the plan is expected to lead the nation to another successful general elections in 2019.
He commended the commission for taking the retreat to the states to elicit local content, noting that the move was an attempt at ensuring collective ownership of the final copy of the strategic plan.
Ariyo, who said the shared experiences of the participants would enrich the outcome of the 2017-2021 strategic Plan, urged participants to make rich inputs.
Participants were drawn from staff of INEC in all the South West states.