In Edo, INEC lifted restrictions on political campaigns

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC

In Edo, INEC lifted restrictions on political campaigns

By Elempe Dele

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has lifted a ban or restriction on political campaigns in Edo State, allowing parties and candidates to resume campaigning for the upcoming September elections.

Read: Edo 2024: Dr. Asue Ighodalo calls for constructive dialogue, civic engagement as Guber campaigns kickoff

The political firmament in Edo State is bristling as expected now that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has lifted the ban on campaigns today.

The airwaves will be brimming with campaign slogans. The streets and towns in the states will be saturated to overflow with branded everything, swarming every corner you turn to.

Motorcades, blaring sound tunes and unnerving attitudes will be the order of the day. Yes, it is the campaign season…you cannot not fail to notice the campaigns have really started.

Its about 5 months to the September election; candidates and their teeming supporters will be at crossroads against their opponents. Deadly political fumes will be placed on the backyards and front yards of political rivals(not necessarily ideological rivals) in spite of clamours from some candidates that the campaigns should be issue-based.

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Decorum would be sent flying from windows and open doors. Inanities will erected by those who are structured not to win the election at all cost. Some candidates and their supporters will not try to avoid calumny.

They will righteously manage in all honesty character assassination. And they will inform you, not in the recess of their private homes, that deliberate peddling of falsehood against their rivals is politics – afterall, politics is a dirty game.

Personalities will have to be thrown mud and dirts at for no just reason except for the fact that they are either contesting elections or supporting one of the major candidates. All these are going to be expected going forward.

Meanwhile, the crux, the kernel and the meat for the reason for the election would be abandoned. Why exactly do we go into elections anywhere in the world? Is it not for the citizens to elect among themselves an individual into the office for management of the public commonwealth?

When this is done, the expectations would be that the dividends of democracy will be shared to the majority of the people. The elected would be expected to illuminate the hopes and expectations of the disenchanted in the society through the legal and just distribution of the commonwealth.

This is so because the people have agreed to submit their individual powers to the sovereign state. So the state acts as a joint venture where each stakeholder is expected to be rewarded with some measure of profit from the investment.

However, when the issues that ought to be on the front burners are displaced for the mundane, the parochial, the isolated…what we are left with are the mutable nature of political deliberations.

We must therefore be ready and equipped to interrogate candidates explicitly, call them for regular debates, interview them on thematic issues, question their manifestos in parts and in whole.

We must recognize the highfalutin propagandas that are meant to persuade unsuspecting voters. We must call for constructive dialogue, civic engagement and encourage dialectical oppositions rather than pretentious platitudes.

The issues that we are faced with are myriads; insecurity of lives and properties, economic downturn, societal ills, problems of ethical, moral principles, value systems, degradation of public education, infrastructural decay, poor healthcare delivery system, food insecurity, lack of industries, unemployment.

And several other social issues the common Edo State citizens are faced with. We cannot continue to look at these things with just passing attentions.

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