By Kazeem Ugbodaga
The Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission, LASIEC, on Monday said it is now ready to conduct councillorship by-election in Ward C, Bariga Local Council Development Area, LCDA of Lagos, Southwest Nigeria.
The by-election will hold at Owode Orile on Tuesday, 18 December, 2018. The vacant councillorship position was created as a result of the death of the former councillor, representing the All Progressives Congress, APC, Solomon Awokoya.
LASIEC Chairman, Justice Ayotunde Phillips, at a news conference in Yaba, Lagos on Monday said there would not be movement restriction as the election would only take place in one ward and a small area, adding that the commission had prepared adequately for the by-election.
Phillips said the commission, in keeping with relevant section of the law, released the notice of the by-election on Thursday, 29 November, 2018 giving details of the election.
She stated that prior to the release of the notice, the electoral commissioners and some members of staff of the commission met with traditional rulers in the ward to intimate them of the election and to solicit support in ensuring residents in the area, especially the youths, conducted themselves peacefully before, during and after the election so that the commission could achieve its objective of conducting a free, fair and credible by-election.
The LASIEC chairman disclosed that the commission would set up an Electoral Support Centre at its office to enable it obtain reports from its personnel at the polling units and collation centre on the election day with a view to responding to any challenge that might arise promptly.
She added that only two political parties, the APC and the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, were contesting the poll.
Phillips urged all eligible voters in the area to cast their votes for any candidate of their choice on Tuesday in demonstration of their civic duties as good citizens, saying that the by-election would take place between 9am and 3pm, adding that voters would be allowed to cast their votes as soon as they had been accredited by election officials.
She assured residents of the affected ward that the commission had received assurances from relevant security agencies and other key stakeholders that the election would be peaceful.
Phillips warned miscreants and criminally minded people to desist from any act that could cause a breach of the peace as anybody caught would be appropriately sanctioned in accordance with the law.
She urged the media to continue to be fair, objective and accurate in their reportage of electoral issues to ensure peace and tranquility in the state, assuring that the commission remained committed to transparency to ensure the credibility and integrity of the electoral process at the Local Government level in the state.