The Inter-party Advisory Council in Ebonyi says it plans to organise a peace-accord forum for all governorship, state and national assembly candidates in the 2019 election.
Jennifer Adibe-Nwafor, state IPAC Chairperson, disclosed this on Thursday in Abakaliki while addressing newsmen, noting that it was to ensure free and peaceful election in the state.
She said: “The project will be in conjunction with some civil society groups, Non-Government Organisations among other relevant stakeholders in the state.
“The peace accord will focus on violence free election and avoidance of hate speeches before, during and after the election in the state.”
Adibe-Nwafor condemned incidences of hate speeches which pervade the state’s political landscape, noting that it causes political tension in the state.
She said: “We also condemn vote buying and selling in any form and other acts capable of causing violence and disruption of the electoral process.
“The electorate is urged to shun vote buying and selling because it would entail mortgaging its future through choosing wrong leaders.
“IPAC will not condone any form of rigging or electoral malpractice in the state and calls on relevant agencies to ensure free, fair and credible elections in 2019.”
She urged the media to enhance its watch role in the society by joining the campaign in sensitising the people to collect and judiciously use their Permanent Voters’ Cards.
She said: “The mass media should also shun the dissemination of fake news and hate speeches by disseminate only credible and verifiable news for societal upliftment.
“Media practitioners must also acquaint themselves with the modus- operandi or elections monitoring code and strictly adhere to its stipulations.”
Adibe-Nwafor said that the council was collaborating with the Independent National electoral Commission to sensitise the people on relevant areas and ensure free and fair election.
She said: “INEC should ensure the early arrival of both sensitive and non-sensitive materials to polling units and voting points.
“It should also ensure that every vote counts by announcing the actual results after vote count preferably at voting points in the presence of the electorate.
“INEC should reduce incidences of election inconclusiveness while the electorate should insist that results be announced at voting points in their presence.”