Judex Okoro, Calabar
The Cross River State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Dr. Emmanuel Alex Hart, has promised to conduct a free and credible by-election in northern senatorial zone.
INEC had declared the senatorial seat vacant following the death of Sen Rose Oko.
Speaking during a courtesy visit on the State Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Comrade Asu Okang, at the Ministry’s Headquarters in Calabar on Thursday, Dr. Hart said the commission would collaborate with the Ministry of Information and Orientation in the area of voter education.
According to him, such partnership would assist in further development of the electoral system in the state as well as ensure mass participation in electoral processes.
He said due to diverse nature of the state the commission depend on the ministry for multilingual messages disseminated through its robust information and communication architecture.
On the forthcoming Northern Senatorial District election, the REC said: “I assure Cross Riverians of the Commission’s readiness to conduct a free, fair and credible poll, in line with international best practices.
“While the state awaits schedule for the vacant seat in the Cross River Northern Senatorial zone, we would will soon embark on a familiarisation tour of the area ahead of the election,” he stated.
Dr. Hart enjoined all stakeholders to play the game according to the rules and regulations guiding elections in Nigeria as that is the only way we can build an enduring democratic society as well as for the overall welfare of the state.
Responding, the State Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Comrade Asu Okang, said he hopes that the new REC would improve upon past performances by maintaining the electoral umpire role of the commission
Okang stated that the quest of the new REC to better the lots of electorates in the State would find a soft landing as he describes
Welcoming the REC, he said Cross Riverians are “civilized and politically conscious people,” as shown in their massive turn out in just-concluded local government poll.
The Commissioner attributed such civility and consciousness to Governor Ben Ayade, who according to him, has redefined leadership, through expansion and youth inclusiveness in governance.
He called on the REC to intervene in the delineation of political wards in Bakassi, in conformity with Law 7 of the State House of Assembly as well as across the state considering the topography and geography of some. of these communities.