Thursday, 11 July 2013

CLEEN Foundation Predicts Violence in 2015 Elections

A non-governmental organisation, CLEEN Foundation, has said the emerging signs are pointed to the possibility of election day and post-election violence in the country in 2015.
Addressing journalists Wednesday in Abuja, on the state of the nation, the 2015 elections ahead of the foundation said the 2015 elections security threat assessment it carried out, identified key risk factors to include the ongoing insurgency in some parts of the country, communal violence, and  electoral manipulation.
The foundation’s Programme Manager, Chinedu Nwagu, said other risks were increasing poverty, unemployment, youth exclusion from the political process, militant youth groups, merger of opposition parties and possible violent disagreement over leadership and candidates as well as contention over zoning of presidential or governorship candidates.

He identified possible violent spots to include Nasarawa, Plateau, Benue, Yobe, Adamawa, Bauchi, Kaduna, Sokoto, Rivers and Delta States before, during, and after the elections.

The foundation listed states that have mid-level chances of violence as Kogi, Niger, Gombe, Taraba, Kano, Katsina, Anambra, Enugu, Ebonyi, Imo, Edo, Bayelsa, Lagos, Oyo and Ogun, while it said Kwara, Jigawa, Zamfara, Kebbi, Abia, Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Ondo, Ekiti and Osun have the lowest threat level.

“Key influencing factors are whether the governors are up for re-election, degree of control by incumbent and relationship with the federal government, stability of internal state party politics, questions of zoning, history of violence and lastly, activities of vigilance groups, militants and insurgents,” Chukwuma stated.

The Programme Manager advised security agencies such as the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), political parties and civil society groups to commence preparation for the elections and include conflict management in their plans.

He called for the disbandment of cult, militia and vigilance groups, which he said were often hired to intimidate voters and opposing party supporters, noting that the mobilisation capacity of the political parties and elite as they engaged the services of youths as political thugs would be a defining element of the run up to the 2015 polls.


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