Groups Signs Truce For Hitch Free Poll In Jos By Yakubu Busari,Jos
Plateau state Political associations, religious leaders security agents and other relevant stakeholders have signed a “Peace Accord” promising violence free election in the state and its environs.
In a programme tagged: “Inter-faith dialogue for peace in Jos: Towards a violence-free elections” organized by the Institute of Governance and Social Research, IGSR, the leaders also assured they will caution their followers against any violent act which could disrupt the fragile peace in the state.
The group lamented were some miscreants engage in uprising during and after the general elections.
In a communique issued at the end of the two days programme, the participants reaffirmed their commitment to the code of conduct and other Declarations on violence-free elections already endorsed by them.
Speaking at the event, one of the participants who is also the Programme Manager, IGSR, Mr. Folorunsho Oloruntunde noted that there are lots of tension and anxiety over the elections hence relevant stakeholders should play their parts in ensuring peace reigns during the period.
He further stated the violation of electoral processes can scuttle democracy and urged key players like politicians and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC to exhibit evidences of trust and transparency in their actions.
According to him, “So many things could go wrong if precautions are not taken. Religion and politics have been manipulated to cause havoc in the society. Winning at all cost mentality should be discouraged.
“Politicians should avoid divide and rule tactics and inflammatory statements and run issue-based campaigns not those which involve religious incitements, character assassinations, ethnic or tribal profiling.”
However, a Professor of Political Science from the University of Jos, Habu Galadima who also spoke urged politicians to brace up to accept declared results and where there are contentions, seek redress through appropriate institutions.
Meanwhile, the programme provided a platform for constructive interactions, facilitated the breaking down of barriers and stereotypes which could lead to distrust among groups and discouraged the mobilization of voters along religious lines.