March 18 Polls: LACSOP Charges Lagosians to Participate Massively, Shun Violence, Tribalism

The Lagos State Civil Society Participation for Development (LACSOP), the umbrella body of all civil Society Organizations in Lagos, has charged all Lagosians to shun every form of violence as they go to the polls for the 2023 Gubernatorial and State House of Assembly elections on March 18.

LACSOP in a press statement issued by the Media Lead, Blessing Oladunjoye also stressed the need to eschew tribalism and urged Lagosians to uphold the tenets of unity and peaceful coexistence.

LACSOP’s Executive Secretary, Dede Kadiri, expressed her displeasure about the pockets of violence that occurred during the Presidential election on February 25, and appealed to all residents of the state to desist from any form of violence that could mar the election process.

Kadiri said “all Lagosians are expected to exercise their civic rights and participate freely in the election, as part of the principles of democracy.

“We all have a role to play to ensure free, fair, and credible elections. That is why it is important that all eligible voters come out en-masse to participate in the process, and not to be involved in any form of violence.”

The Executive Secretary who noted that LACSOP was unhappy with the conduct of previous elections, appealed to all relevant stakeholders to ensure the security and safety of all involved in the electoral process.

Corroborating this, Barr. Ayo Adebusoye, the Chairman, Board of Trustees at LACSOP who noted that the electorates seem to be more interested in the Presidential elections compared to other elections that affect them directly, tasked Lagosians to come out en masse to participate in the Gubernatorial and State Houses of Assembly elections.

Adebusoye who decried the low voters’ turnout during the February 25 Presidential election noted that “the gubernatorial elections coming up on Saturday is the most important for the ordinary Nigerian because the state is more responsible for the things that affect the people directly, such as the roads, water, healthcare facilities among others.

“The Gubernatorial and State House of Assembly elections are very critical, the legislators are the ones who design budgets to different sectors and it is important that the right people are elected into those seats.”

He urged Lagosians “to come out and vote responsibly for the candidates of their choice, based on issues, track records, and capacity.”

He called on INEC to address the gaps that existed during the presidential polls, especially with the logistics, to ensure that no one is disenfranchised.

“It is hoped that INEC has corrected all the glitches that happened, especially with the uploading of results, and the voters should protect their mandates by staying at the polling unit peacefully to ensure that all election results are uploaded to the IReV portal,” Adebusoye added.

On his part, Dr. Adebukola Adebayo, the Lagos State Chairman of the Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities who decried the challenges that Persons with Disabilities encountered during the February 25 polls, urged INEC to ensure that assistive devices are distributed to locations where PWDs are present.

“PWDs are too significant to be ignored in the electoral process. If INEC has provided the materials, it is important that they distribute them to Polling units where there are PWDs, so that it can enable us to participate seamlessly in the electoral process,” Adebayo added

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