A Non-Governmental Organisation, Grand Rainbow Empowerment Initiative International (GREII), says the general elections will be used by the world to measure Nigeria’s democratic maturity.
President of the organisation, Mr Paul Abbey, stated this while addressing newsmen at a rally in Gombe State Main Market on Thursday.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the rally, organised by GREII in partnership with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has “Say No to Violence and Thuggery” as theme.
He said that the rally was organised to awaken the consciousness of the people to the need to jettison violence before, during and after the elections.
“The world is watching Nigeria and wants to see if we have come of age democratically as to conduct a violence-free election.
“It is in this light that we are here to add value to what INEC is doing. We believe that Nigeria is at the threshold of history again as election year is always important to the people.
“We want to plead with the electorate to steer clear of vote-buying, selling, violence and thuggery.
“It is our civic responsibility to vote and we must do it peacefully so as to consolidate on the previous successes,” he said.
In his contribution, National Secretary of the group, Mr Victor Etim, appealed to candidates in all the elections to accept the verdict, whichever way it went and not to jeopardise the process.
On the side line, Malam Mohammed Adamu, who claimed to have a voter’s card, said that the call was necessary and timely, adding that youths must be reminded of the gains of having a peaceful election.
Adamu said that there were lots of candidates for the electorate to make their choice, and therefore, implored voters in Gombe state to vote according to their consciences.
A woman, Mrs Patience Dakup, charged all women in the Northern part of the country to come out and vote, and appealed to husbands to give their wives the opportunity to perform their civic rights. (NAN)