Ondo election: Clerics urge politicians, supporters to shun violence


By Aderemi Bamgbose

Okitipupa (Ondo State) Oct. 7, 2020 Ahead of Oct. 10 Governorship election in Ondo State, Christian and Muslim clerics on Wednesday appealed to politicians and supporters of political parties to shun violence before, during and after the election.

The clerics made the call in separate interviews with journalists in Okitipupa.

They urged the electorate to conduct themselves properly at polling units, cast their votes for their preferred candidates and allow the election umpire to give detailed results of the electoral process.

The clerics, however, appealed to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies to conduct the elections without fear or favour for the outcome of the election to be free, fair and credible.

Pastor Peter Akinyelure, Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Okitipupa Local Government Area, said that politicians who meant to serve the people would not engage in violence which could truncate the electioneering process.

He urged politicians to appeal to their supporters to conduct themselves well before, during and after the election and not to heat up the polity, which could result in violence.

“Politicians are meant to serve the people and that is why the election must not be a do-or-die affair. They should appeal to their supporters not to cause violence during and after the election.

“The electorate should go out and vote their preferred candidate. I do not support anyone but to God be the glory for anyone that is declared winner,’’ Akinyelure said.

Alhaji Kamaldeen Adeyemi-Bagudu, the Chief Imam of Okitipupa, also urged politicians and their supporters to show decorum and abide by all the rules of INEC during the election.

He advised the electorate to desist from any act that could truncate the electioneering process, saying that INEC and security agencies should do their jobs without fear of favour.

“We are appealing to our politicians and their supporters to imbibe peaceful conduct during the forthcoming election because nothing can be achieved through a violent process.

“The voters should vote and let INEC declare the results. INEC and security agencies are urged to do their jobs without fear or favour for the outcome to be free, fair and credible,’’ Adeyemi-Bagudu said.

Naija247news reports that 17 candidates of the political parties participating in the election on Tuesday in Akure signed a peace accord with the Peace Committee headed by former Head of State, Retired Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar.

The candidates were led by Gov. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of All Progressives Congress (APC), Eyitayo Jegede of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Agboola Ajayi of Zenith Labour Party (ZLP).