Afenifere, a Pan-Yoruba sociopolitical organization, has warned politicians over the increase in verbal and physical abuse during election campaigns in Nigeria.
In a recent statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Jare Ajayi, the organization urged political parties and their candidates to focus on issues regarding how they would tackle the myriad of challenges that Nigeria is facing rather than coming up with statements and actions that “border on de-marketing of opponents and possibly causing bodily harm on other people.”
Ajayi disclosed that certain politicians’ verbal attacks and attacks from their spokespeople were inciting their dishonest fans to attack competitors violently in a way that would lead to bloodshed.
He said according to the statement’s citation of Babagana Monguno (retired), national security adviser, 52 instances of political violence in 22 states between October 8 and November 9 were documented in Nigeria.
He said: “That was 52 acts of political violence within just one month! Monguno said this at an emergency meeting of the Inter-agency Consultative Committee on Election Security organised by the Independent National Electoral Commission in Abuja recently.
“Candidates and political parties that have good programmes to execute would not resort to verbal or physical attacks.
“We urge political parties and their candidates to focus on what plans they have to put an end or at least ameliorate the sufferings of Nigerians.
“They should let us know that they understand the enormity of the problems facing us and that they have solutions to these problems. An end should be put to mutual self-abuse either verbally or physically.”
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