Ahead of 2023 general elections, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Enugu State, has said it is worrisome recording low turnout of people in the on-going continuous voters’ registration exercise in rural communities in the state.
Speaking at the formal Inauguration of Udi Local Government Area executive of a non-governmental- organization called “Enugu State Citizens Support for Equity and Good Governance (ESCSEG), held yesterday in Udi, the Electoral Officer in Udi, Mrs. Cecilia Ejimofor, said the poor turnout would impact negatively on the electorate.
Mrs. Ejimofor noted that the continuous voters’ registration exercise was a strategy put in place by the electoral body to provide more opportunities to eligible voters have voters’ cards with a view to fulfilling their civic responsibility in 2023 elections.
“I commend this group, Enugu State Citizens Support for Equity and Good Governance for moving its enlightenment campaign on voters’ registration exercise to Udi Local Government Area of the State.
“INEC will partner with this group because they are going extra mile to make sure our people participate fully in electing their leaders democratically”, she added.
Earlier in his speech, the State Coordinator of ESCSEG, Comrade Onyendozi E. Onwe, explained that they were in Udi for flag-off/inauguration of members of local government executive of ESCSEG, adding they are poised to extend the campaign to rural communities to reach more eligible voters in the state.
Comrade Onwe who decried apathy in the on-going voters ‘registration exercise, noted that good governance begins with credible election, stressing, “ESCSEG as a non-interest political movement was established to promote equity, good governance and social justice with a mission to engage the citizens to actively participate in democratic process to reduce political related apathy among the citizens.”
“ESCSEG believes that the current security challenges across the country are traceable to decades of negligence and bad governance by successive government at all levels”.
“When we talk about societal challenges such as armed robbery, kidnapping, terrorism, economic sabotage, vandalism etc. and weigh it with bad governance which is generally believed to be the root causes and the inability of government at all levels to bring all these to acceptable end, could be as a result of citizens’ unwillingness to participate in governance process.
“When citizens feel that development activities perform by the government is for them, it means the work performed by the government is people-oriented.
“To close the existing gap between the governed and the governance, the Enugu State Citizens Support for Equity and Good Governance (ESCSEG) has adopted an approach called “Citizen Empowerment through Advocacy”.
A prominent indigene of the local government area, Chief Agu Ozo in an interview, said he was overwhelmed with the activities of ESCSEG, urging them to keep the tempo high.
The enlightenment on voters’ registration exercise is apt and timely and I encourage them all to go ahead with the good job, adding that there is poor turnout of people for the excercise in the area.
“We are happy for what you people are doing. Our people don’t realize that you can make a positive change in governance with your voter card”, he added.
Uche Nwosu is a two time Shell Petroleum PLC award winner in the year 2000;
He won the Shell Award on Investigative Journalism and Environmental Cleanliness.