Bola Tinubu, a National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, has urged all candidates and stakeholders involved in the Saturday’s governorship election in Ekiti State to shun violence and mischief that could jeopardize the successful conduct of the election.
Tinubu harped on the need for stakeholders to be committed to a peaceful and transparent election on Saturday so as to uphold the nation’s democracy.
In a statement he signed, the former Lagos State Governor urged political leaders and other leaders of thought to speak to their subjects and followers on the need to be peaceful, orderly and respectful of other party adherents at the polls.
He warned followers of various parties against wrongful thinking, urging them to think aright and only commit themselves to a free, fair and transparent election.
The statement reads, “For the utmost benefit of the people of Ekiti, this election must be a peaceful event, free and fair and devoid of any hint of violence or intimidation.
“The anxiety expressed in some quarters and even by some concerned traditional rulers and leaders in Ekiti about the imminent poll has come to my attention.
“I particularly note the call for a peaceful and transparent poll by the consultative body of eminent elders and leaders in Ekiti, Igbimo Ure Ekiti (IUE).
“Given the high respect we all must have for the place and the wise counsel of our traditional rulers and other notable leaders, it would be remiss of us to ignore their words.
“Thus, those of us who have influence within any of the contending political parties or within the society, in general, must also lend their voice to the call for peace and calm.
“Let the will of the people prevail. In a democratic setting, there can be no greater justice or victory than this. I urge the electorate in Ekiti to exercise their civic responsibility by voting without fear or trepidation. Be vigilant but orderly and respectful of all others even the partisans of the other parties.
“We must allow the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) discharge its responsibility fairly and objectively with nothing to hide and with transparency in all its doings. Above all, this is the time for the candidates to show their true love of the people.
“These candidates say they want to lead the people to a better place. Well, let them begin now by leading their followers away from any hint of violence or mischief. Let the candidates clearly and publicly declare that they condone no misbehaviour and that they will respect the free and democratic will of the people come what may.
“This is the essence of leadership-putting the welfare of the people above your own-. Let he who wishes to be the next governor begin now by eschewing violence and disorder.
“In the end, an election is a contest of competing personalities and ideas regarding the progress of the state, not the destruction of it. Thus, the election is not a conflict of arms or a call for war. It is a matter of determining, among the candidates, whose ideas are best for the state. This cannot be done by wrongful fighting.