Local Government elections in the 16 Council Areas of Ekiti state are now to hold on December 7, as against December 14 earlier announced.
The Chairman of the Ekiti State Independent Electoral Commission, EKSIEC, Justice Jide Aladejana, made this known at a news conference in Ado Ekiti on Wednesday.
He appealed to the opposition parties in the state not to boycott the exercise, insisting that the commission would be fair to all.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the tenure of the 177 councillors and 16 chairmen would lapse on December 19, having assumed office in December 19, 2017.
Mr Aladejana while appealing to the opposition not to boycott the polls as it had been the usual practice in the past, assured citizens that the polls would be transparent and devoid of rigging.
The SIEC boss disclosed that the body would use voter registers of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, and its guidelines for the conduct of the elections.
He said the commission would collaborate with the security agencies to provide adequate security, noting that there would not be intimidation, rigging and suppression of the opposition on the Election Day.
“We are assuring our people that your votes will count, so all parties must sponsor candidates for the elections
“Do not have this wrong perception that the local government elections will automatically be rigged in favour of the ruling party,” he said.
The SIEC boss said the Chairmanship form would cost N50, 000 while that of Councillor would cost N20, 000 for the purpose of the elections.
On the mode of electioneering campaign, Mr Aladejana said, “electioneering can start on Saturday, September 14 and it has to be devoid of violence and hate speech.
“Let there be constructive engagements and we will monitor the parties in this regard.
“It is expected that all the parties will conduct their primaries for Councillors’ elections on 21st of September and that of Chairmanship will be done on September 28.
“We will give the parties level playing ground. We will be transparent in all our dealings and ensure adequate public participation.
“The most important thing to us is that, we want parties to sponsor people of proven integrity for these elections, because when you have good people at the third tier of government, they will protect the welfare of the people.
“We are assuring our political parties that these elections are going to be model in our country,” he said.