Election: UN, Intl Observers Urge INEC to strictly adhere to dates

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The Heads of the international observation missions in
Nigeria have urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to
strictly adhere to the new dates it scheduled for the general elections.

The appeal was made in a joint statement signed by the Heads
of Missions and the United Nations (UN) on Saturday in Abuja.

The statement was made available by Sarah Fradgley, Press
and Public Outreach Officer, European Union Election Observation Mission.

The heads of the various missions also called on Nigerians
to continue to remain calm and supportive of the electoral process as INEC
worked to implement its new timeline.

“We, the Heads of the international election observation
missions and the United Nations present in Nigeria, have taken note of the
decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to postpone
the 2019 general elections due to logistical and operational challenges.

“We urge INEC to use this time to finalise all preparations
and ensure that the new election dates are strictly adhered to.”

They encouraged INEC to provide regular updates and
information to the public on its preparations in the coming days and weeks to
enhance confidence and trust in the process.

They also expressed continued solidarity with Nigerians in
their desire for credible and peaceful elections, adding that they would
continue to closely observe preparations across the country.

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The heads of missions are Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, former
President of Liberia leading ECOWAS, and African Union led by Hailemariam
Desalegn, former Prime Minister of Ethiopia.

Other missions are the Commonwealth, headed by Dr Jakaya
Kikwete, former President of Tanzania; Electoral Institute for Sustainable
Democracy in Africa, led by Rupiah Banda, former President of Zambia.

The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, Amb. Boubakar
Adamou, Director of African Political Affairs and the UN Special Representative
of the Secretary-General for West Africa and the Sahel, Dr Mohamed Ibn Chambas
were also represented.

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