• assures the electoral body of necessary support on voters’ education

ENetSuD is aware of a publication being shared widely on various WhatsApp and media platforms, which was reportedly authored by Mr. Baba Okanla, the Chairman of the Kwara State Independent Electoral Commission (KWSIEC). The statement scheduled the local government election in Kwara State to hold on 21st September, 2024.

While we are not aware of any official channel of communication of KWSIEC through which we could verify the authenticity of the statement, we assume that it is true as there has not been any rejoinder or denial within a reasonable period.

ENetSuD considers the statement as a notice of LG election in line with section 21(1) of the Kwara State Local Government Electoral (Amendment) Law 2024, despite the unprofessional and questionable manner in which such an important notice has been done. This is pardonable, provided the body would improve on its communication mechanisms.

We salute KWSIEC for yielding to our earlier call to ignore the 360 days of election notice earlier imported into the amended Law by the Governor and the Kwara State House of Assembly (KWHA) against public interest to push the election to the year 2025.

It would be recalled that ENetSuD earlier advised KWSIEC to issue an election notice for a lower number of days rather than 360 days in line with the Law.

Now, we are pleased to note that KWSIEC listened to our noble call, which serves public interest better than the previous conspiratorial plan of the government.

As an anti-corruption Civil Society Organisation that is interested in promoting good governance – by promoting the rule of law, good governance, transparency, and accountability; among others – ENetSuD is assuring KWSIEC of its readiness to support its statutory duties with voters’ education via its numerous radio programs of wide coverage towards having a fairly credible election.

ENetSuD is charging KWSIEC to establish its official communication channels through which the citizens would be receiving credible communications from the body, as fake news is incompatible with the electoral process. It can undermine the credibility of the electoral process, if not prevented.

We urge KWSIEC to communicate its website, Facebook page, and Twitter channel, among other suitable electronic channels, from which citizens can source credible information about the electoral process. In this era of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), the office of KWSIEC should not be the only place to get information, especially as most citizens are now social media friendly. The body should learn from INEC and let citizens see it to be responsible.

AbdulRazaq Olayemi,
Deputy Coordinator (Special Duties),
Elites Network for Sustainable Development (ENetSuD),
17th May, 2024