Delta LG Election: IPAC tasked opposition parties on effective campaign
…..Wants state government to prosecute defaulting contractors
Ahead of the January 6, 2018 local government election in Delta state, the Inter Party Advisory Council (IPAC) has called on political parties, particularly the opposition to embark on rigorous campaign process if they want to emerge victorious at the polls, even as the body tasked the state government to tackle the issue of abandon projects spread all over the state.
In a communique issued at the end of an enlarged meeting of IPAC in Asaba and signed by its state chairman, Mr. Fred Obi, the body frowned at the ugly situation and advised that, the state executive council should go after contractors, invoke the relevant sanctions of Delta and national laws as well as the contractual agreement so as to bring defaulting contractors to face justice.
The Delta state IPAC commended the state governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, for the timely constitution of the the Delta state independent electoral commission (DSIEC), and acknowledged the receipt of the time table and programmes for the forthcoming local government election which is to climax with the election of local government chairmen and ward councillors on the 6th of January 2018.
IPAC appealed to the electoral umpire DSIEC to give a level playing field to political parties, even as it agreed that the window period for campaign should be properly utilized to sell their candidates and party manifestoes.
IPAC, however, expressed dissatisfaction over low sensitisation of the electorate by political parties who would need their votes on the election day.
“Criticism is allowed in our democracy, that political parties who may wish to do so are free but must be constructive in their criticism and avoid the use of vulgar and derogatory languages. We condemn activities of some political parties and their paid agents that go on the social media to insult the person of the governor.
A committee will be constituted to review the activities of some of these political parties on social media with a view to sanctioning them if found culpable. Political parties are very free to engage the government on constructive criticism, that by constructive criticism, the council meant criticizing the policies and programmes of government and not to go on attacking and directly insulting the person of the seating governor.”
IPAC commended the state governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, for graciously approving the release of the sum of eight hundred million (N800,000,000) to clear the salary arrears of the local government workers and primary school teachers, saying the release of the money was timely being the period of Christmas and new year festivities.
“This singular action of the governor is worthy of commendation in that, the governor has brought smiles on the faces of the workers as well as members of their families throughout this period of Christmas and New Year Festivities.
“We appeal that the money released by the governor be used for the purpose it’s meant for, IPAC is watching and would not want to hear any contrary stories hence the responsible offices/officers must be alive to their responsibilities.”
IPAC equally thanked Governor Okowa for the way he has managed the Aladja and Ogbe-Ijoh crisis, but added that government should unravel whatever may be the root cause of the crisis for it to be promptly and properly addressed to avoid further loss of lives and properties.
IPAC urged the federal government to urgently attend to the issues as was agreed between them and the Niger Delta militants which formed the basis as to why there was a complete cease fire, saying “in as much we would not encourage violence and destruction of public assets, that the federal government should know that some of the issues as itemized by the militants are germane to the people of the Niger Delta, hence it must be urgently attended to.”
Meanwhile, ahead of the January 6, 2018 council elections, IPAC has paid a visit to the DSIEC to ascertain its preparedness towards conducting a free, fair and credible election.
State Chairman of IPAC, Fred Obi, who doubles as the Delta State Chairman of the Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA), told journalists that State chairman of the DSIEC has assured of an equal and level playing ground for all political parties in the state, urging the parties to take it as an opportunity to sell their manifestoes to the general public so they can win their votes.
He further advised the electorate against selling their votes rather he encouraged them to use their voting power to elect only credible candidates who would provide them good representation at various levels of public offices.