The National Peace Committee (NPC) has come up with an agenda for a peaceful general election next year.
The meeting in the residence of its Chairman and former Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar, in Minna, said the Committee stood stoutly against any form of vote buying and fake news during the 2023 general elections.
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The committee agreed that candidates and their Spokespersons will sign two peace Accords ahead of the elections.
In a two page statement made available to newsmen at the end of the meeting in Minna, General Abdulsalami Abubakar, reminded all Nigerians that the 2023 general election must end in peace without any rancor.
“2023 is more than an election. It is an opportunity to serve Nigeria, to defend Nigeria and to uphold her unity and progress.
“Nigerians should avoid the spread of fake news and uphold the principles of tolerance, respect, civility and decency in all public and private conversations and engagements about elections and the progress of Nigeria.”
“All political actors especially their publicity agents and media advisers should shun personal attacks, avoid insults and incitements reject the spread of fake news and commit to issue- based campaigns and political rallies in the upcoming 2023 general elections.”
“The pattern of public communication among political actors, their publicity agents, spokespersons and media consultants has amplified the potential for personal attacks, insults, and incitement.”
“The attacks by politicians and their supporters on their opponents have moved from issue based campaigns which has relegated civility to the background and this has relegated to the background, the civility and decency in public discourse and debate, additionally it has shifted focus away from issue-based campaigns to consolidating identity politics and the politics of thuggery.”
“In view of this, there is a need to promote a culture of healthy issue-based campaigns and political communication.
Consequently, the committee, organised the signing of two Peace Accords for the 2023 general election.
The statement added that the first peace Accords will be signed on Thursday 29th September 2022 at the International Conference Centre Abuja to commit all political parties presidential candidates and their spokespersons to peaceful political campaigns and rallies devoid of violence incitement and personal insults while the second peace Accords will come up shortly before elections.
“It is intended to commit candidates to accepting the outcome of the votes as long as it is adjudged to be free fair and credible,” it added.
Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Professor Mahmud Yakubu who attended the meeting assured that the Commission will conduct a free, fair and credible election.
According to him, “the Commission had been keeping to it’s timetable and from records, eight out of the plans have been successfully implemented
Among the new people enlisted into the Council are former Chief of Defence Staff General Martin Luther Agwai, Chief Femi Otebola.
Present at the meeting are General Abdulsalami Abubakar, Most Reverend Hassan Mathew Kukah, the Sultan of Sokoto Alhaji Saad Abubakar, the Etsu Nupe Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar, former Secretary to the Government Alhaji Yayale Ahmed, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, Chairman and Publisher of Vanguard Media Corporation, Sam Amuka.