The Senate has tasked the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on the need to ensure equity, fairness and transparency during the July 8, 2017 bye-election in Osun State.
At plenary on Thursday, members also urged the electoral umpire, the Police, Department of State Services (DSS), Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and other relevant security agencies to be transparent by ensuring fair play and unhindered and unrestricted participation in the election.
It asked security agencies in the electoral process to ensure that any persons suspected of electoral offences in the course of the bye-election are apprehended and prosecuted to the full extent of the provisions of not only the Electoral Act but all other relevant laws.
The resolutions followed the adoption of a motion entitled “Osun State senatorial re-run election: The need for equity and transparency in the electioneering process” sponsored by Senator Duro Faseyi (Ondo North).
Faseyi noted that the death of Senator Isiaka Adeleke on 23rd April, 2017 created a vacuum in the Osun West Senatorial District as the people were left without representation.
He underscored the importance of bye-election as it would fill the void created in the area and give the people their senatorial voice.
He expressed concern about growing verbal attacks by both candidates on themselves head of the election.
He feared that the verbal attacks have the propensity to heat up the community that tethered on the edge of violence and break down of law and order.
Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu who seconded the motion said that the bye-election is an opportunity for INEC to convince Nigerians that it is ready for the 2019 general election.
Ekweremadu also urged INEC to ensure a level playing field during the election.
Senate President, Abubakar Bukola Saraki further underscored the need for free and fair election and asked security agencies to play evenly during the election.