Edo 2020: EU cautions politicians against violence

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Ahead of the Edo state gubernatorial election later in the year, politicians have been urged to show restraints in their quest for power.

The European Union Ambassador to Nigeria, Ketil Karlsen gave the advice on Thursday in Benin during a visit to state Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Dan Orbih, and leaders of the party.

Karlsen also appealed for peace and non-violence in the forthcoming Edo governorship election, adding that the EU was also meeting with other political parties on the same message.

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He advocated collaborative effort in order to amend the electoral law and pledged EU’s willingness to support the process.

He explained that the EU has over 3,000 projects across the Niger Delta and was partnering with Edo Government on many projects.

Karlsen also noted the role of the EU in the repatriation of youths trapped along illegal migrants routes and rehabilitating them to cut the illegal trade.

The ambassador emphasised the importance of the opposition in democratic consolidation.

He disclosed that since the restoration of democracy in 1999, the EU had spent more than 100 million Euros to support various democratic institutions.

Karlsen listed such institutions as INEC, political parties, Civil Society and Media, including deploying hundreds of long and short term observers and giving recommendations on the electoral processes.

He noted that the EU would remain impartial in its operations and urged parties and politicians to allow for transparent primaries, more participation by women and the youth, as well as to desist from hate speech.

The discussion also centered on politics, judiciary, illegal migration and women trafficking as well as the EU role in the political and economic development of Nigeria.

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