Mr Mike Igini, the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Akwa Ibom said there will be no external forces within and outside the state that would determine or influence both the process and the outcome of 2019 general elections in the state.
Igini made the remarks during an interview with newsmen in Uyo, state capital on Thursday.
He said that as an umpire entrusted with the responsibility to midwife the process do not matters but the validly votes cast of the people of the state would matter.
Igini noted that what must matter was the electorates of the state that would cast the votes that must be counted and take into account to determine who occupies any elective public office.
“I want to be clear, no external forces from within and outside the state will determine or influence both the process and the outcome of 2019 general elections in this state except the validly cast votes of the people of the state.
“Over the past experiences expressed by our ordinary people and other key stakeholders amongst the elites as to whether the commission has the will and capacity to conduct free, fair and credible elections in the state without any interferences from within and outside the state.”
He noted that the commission would ensure that the election materials would be delivered and audited in the 2,980 polling units across the state for the conduct of free, fair and credible elections in the state.
“We are committed to ensure that elections are best opportunity for the people to make a periodic leadership choices in a democracy,” Igini said.
He explained that the commission had developed an Election Project Plan (EPP), that would guide and track all planned activities leading to the conduct of the 2019 general elections.
Igini said that the state EPP document was aimed at guiding the state office through the process, activities and events that would take place before, during and after the elections within the general policy guidelines of the commission.
The REC said that many electoral tools have been developed that would certainly change the complexion if elections from what you are familiar with to something a lot different.
He said that there are nine days to the commencement of party primaries across the country, adding that party primaries would commenced by Aug. 18.
“We are going to provide a level playing field for all political parties in the state,” he said.
“There is need for all political parties to conduct themselves very well by ensuring that the code of conduct that you have signed under article eight as well as strict observant of the provisions section 130 of the electoral Act are fully observed,” he said.
“We have developed election monitoring centre which is basically designed to track all activities before and during elections, particularly with respect to delivery of materials.
“Result sheets, ballot papers at the moment are under the platform to be tracked in every state of Nigeria,” he said.
He said that elections materials would be delivered in every polling units and audited.
“There will be no room for any form of fraud by way of whether pre writing of results, that era is gone.
“Ballot box snatching, allocation of votes, hoarding of materials, brutalising of party agents and other forms of electoral malpractices are gone,” Akwa Ibom REC said.
He said that the centre would help declare or know the polling units results on time across the state.