Gov. Nasiru El-Rufai of Kaduna State on Wednesday reiterated the commitment of the All Progressives Congress Party (APC) toward peaceful elections in the state in 2019.
El-Rufai stated this at a Peace Summit for political parties organised by the State Peace Commission.
The governor who said that rigging was the major cause of violence during any elections, urged all political party candidates to concede defeat when a winner emerged as he would also do the same.
He also appealed to all candidates to avoid politics of bitterness, stressing that abusive words in politics should be avoided as election was not war but only a contest.
“Anybody inciting election violence within and outside Kaduna State, irrespective of their personalities would be brought back to Kaduna for prosecution and justice.’’ he said.
While addressing the representatives of the various political parties, the Chairman, Kaduna State Peace Commission, Archbishop Idowu Fearon, said various elections in the past had been challenged with provocative languages.
According to Fearon, the best pathway for peaceful elections is setting common principles, common values and standards for political campaigns and personal conduct during elections.
”We are optimistic that the goal of every candidates present here will bring peace, development and dividends of good governance to their various constituencies,” he said.
The chairman presided over the agreement entered by the various political parties, particularly the governorship candidates and they swore as thus;
”We, the respected leaders and candidates of the various political parties present here today, Wednesday, the 5th of December, 2018 hereby resolve and agree toward peaceful 2019 general elections.
“We will refrain from all violent actions. We shall direct all our supporters to conduct themselves and the elections peacefully,” they affirmed.
The chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the state, Hassan Hyet, said when there was fairness and justice, confidence would be restored amongst people, hence, their willingness to participate in the elections.
He, therefore, urged security agencies to be neutral and fair in the enforcement of law and order in the forthcoming elections.
”On behalf of the PDP, we assure this Commission and the people of Kaduna State that we are prepared to conduct ourselves in accordance with the laws of our land and the guidelines from INEC” he said.
The chairman urged the Peace Commission to as a matter of urgency, set up a monitoring committee where aggrieved parties can tender complaints which should be addressed.