By: OLADELE ADEDAYO, Ado-Ekiti
As the Ekiti state Governorship election slated for July 14 approaches,journalists in the State on Wednesday marched through the streets of Ado-Ekiti, the state capital and urged residents to do away with electoral violence.
Acting under the aegis of the Ekiti State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), the pen pushers charged residents to conduct themselves peacefully at the poll and not to plunge the state into chaos before, during and after the poll.
The procession started at the NUJ Secretariat, Oke Bareke and took the journalists through Isato, Irona, Ijigbo, Old Garage, Okeyinmi, Okesa,Ojumose, Atikankan areas of the city.
Members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and students and officials of the Ado-Ekiti Campus of the International Institute of Journalism (IIJ) also took part in the exercise.
Participants at the rally carried placards and distributed leaflets denouncing violence, arson, electoral malpractices and other behavior that could cause breakdown of law and order.
Some of the placard reads: “We Want Peace in Ekiti,” “Vote, Not Fight,Election No Be War,” “Remember Your Life Is Very Precious,” “Shun Electoral Violence,” “Your Vote Is Your Power, Vote Right,” “Don’t
Allow Yourselves To Be Used as Thugs,” among others.
They stopped at junctions to make advocacy to the people for
peaceful poll while residents applauded them for the gesture which they said was timely.
Speaking at the rally, Ekiti NUJ Chairman, Rotimi Ojomoyela, urged the people of the state not to allow the forthcoming poll to be marred by violence.
Ojomoyela said the rally was the contribution of the NUJ to a peaceful
electoral process urging politicians, voters and other stakeholders to
maintain peace for the poll to be successful.
He explained that the NUJ is a non-partisan body but is concerned
about loss of lives which is always trail the conduct of elections in
Ojomoyela said: “This rally was organized to send a message that
election violence does not pay and we want to appeal to our people to
say no to violence.
“Election is a civic duty and should be done peacefully; we urge
eligible voters to go to their polling stations on election day and
vote peacefully for the candidates of their choice.
“We urge politicians not to use our children and youths as thugs and
we also warn our younger generation not to allow themselves to be used to cause mayhem at election.
“Ekiti is a peaceful state, the NUJ is for peace and we will continue
to advocate for peace. All stakeholders in the electoral process must give peace a chance.”
The NUJ Vice Chairman, Aderonke Samo,urged Ekiti youths not to allow politicians to destroy their future by using them to unleash terror at election period.
She said: “Our youths must realize that they have their own lives to
live and they should not be tools for violence. Who tells you that you
too cannot become president, governor or senator in the nearest
“We don’t want anybody’s blood to be used as sacrifice for election,our youths be warned! We are also calling on our parents to rein in
their wards, so that they will not be used to burn houses, vehicles and vandalize properties.”
By: OLADELE ADEDAYO, Ado-Ekiti