United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) have launched Sensitisation Training for Voter Education Providers (VEPs) in South-South and South-East geo-political zones in Calabar and Enugu.
The training aims at sensitising VEPs ahead of the 2023 General Elections. They are drawn from Bayelsa, Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Delta, Edo states and the host Cross River State for the South-South geo-political zone; and Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi, Imo and the host Enugu for the South-East geo-political zone.
UNDP Team Lead, Governance, Peace and Security, Mr. Matthew Alao, at the opening ceremony in Enugu, said Voter Education is crucial to the successful election, as it would assist the electoral body in its task of delivering free, fair, effective, transparent and credible elections.
“It is, therefore, expected that the ongoing INEC sensitisation of Voter Education Providers in the six geopolitical zones will help to cascade the basic voter information to the voting population at all governance levels, including ward level in the country,” Alao said.
INEC technical team, led by Prof. M. J. Kuna, and the INEC National Electoral Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, and his team were commended for promoting fairness, transparency, inclusiveness for credible elections in 2023.
Mr. Deryck Fritz, UNDP Chief Technical Adviser for Elections, at the opening of the workshop for VEPs organised by UNDP in Calabar, said sensitisation fora and various electoral events by INEC and partners are clear indications that 2023 general elections in Nigeria are gathering the desired momentum.
He said: “It is our hope that this workshop allows for productive exchanges that will contribute to enabling efficient organisation and conduct of the elections so that key political actors and wider Nigerian electorate can have full confidence in both the process and its outcomes,” Mr Fritz said.
Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Cross River State, Dr. Johnson Alalibo Sinikiem, said participants were chosen for the training and subsequent collaboration for their experiences and activities towards the enlightenment of the public on electoral issues.