Wednesday, May 02, 2018 7.00PM / Proshare WebTV
Professor Mahmood Yakubu, Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has called for close collaboration between the electoral body and the Broadcasting Organization of Nigeria(BON) on voter education ahead of the 2019 general elections.
The INEC boss disclosed this as the keynote speaker at the 69th BON Annual General Assembly in Lekki, Lagos.
Speaking on the topic “Broadcasting & the 2019 elections” Professor Yakubu described the media as the cornerstone of democracy, noting that they play a critical role in the proper functioning of a democratic system.
According to him the Media is a major influencer of political discourse through areas like providing platforms for political engagements, voter education and public debates.
He described the media as a key force in partnering with the electoral commission, to safeguard the process of credible election.
Other roles of the media during election cycles listed by the INEC Chairman include; reporting during election campaigns, providing platforms for public feedback during elections, organizing televised debates, professional coverage during the elections and reporting during the elections.
Yakubu believed that in partnering with BON, INEC and other stakeholders in the election process will seek a mitigation of unwholesome practices in election coverage, fair and credible reporting before, during and after elections, a wider scope in televised debates that accommodates the multi-party system.
The Chairman assured the Broadcasting community that INEC was determined to conduct a 2019 general elections, that will be adjudged the best ever in Nigeria’s electoral history.
With a projection of 80ml voters for the 2019 elections, and 68 political parties in the country, Prof Yakubu was of the strong view that voter education will create more awareness and increase citizen participation in the elections.
Speaking he shared that through the 2017-2021 INEC Election plan, effective monitoring of elections and the strengthening of civic and voter mechanisms, were among the key strategies laid out in achieving credible elections.