Yiaga Africa has urged citizen observers to imbibe the core value of integrity, accountability and transparency during their responsibility as election observers ahead of the Ekiti State Governorship election. Board member of Yiaga Africa’s Watching The Vote (WTV), Ezenwa Nwagwu said this on Thursday, during his visit to various election day observation training centers across 16 Local Government Areas of the state.
Yiaga Africa through its WTV project had deployed its cohort of 41 Master Trainers across LGAs to train 541 citizen observers who will be deployed to observe and report the June 18th, 2022 Governorship election in the state. Master Trainers trained citizen observers on the election day process like accreditation, voting, sorting and counting and announcement of election results. Observers were also exposed to various guidelines guiding election and election observation.
Thus while visiting some of the centers to provide moral support to the team, Ezenwa lauded the effort of the Trainers and dedication of citizen observers. He said while the citizen observers are ambassadors of Yiaga Africa because they represent the organization, their role as election observers is in a bid for them to contribute their own quota towards promoting credible election in Ekiti State. He said, “when you get to the polling unit on election day, the core value of integrity is the principal thing, its number one”.
He said, on election day, observers may be tempted with financial inducement but warned that they must remain honest and ensure they protect their own integrity and that of Yiaga Africa. According to him, citizen observers must be security conscious as their lives are valuable, saying “while your election observation reports are precious and important to promoting credible elections, you must be conscious of your polling units and remain safe”.
For the 2022 Ekiti State governorship election, #WatchingTheVote will deploy a total number of 500 Polling Unit Observers to observe the accreditation, voting and counting processes on election day. Yiaga Africa will also have 25 mobile (roving) observers present in all the 16 Local Government Areas (LGAs).
WTV Observers will report on the opening of polling units, accreditation and voting, counting and the announcement/posting of results. Citizen Observers will also send in official results as announced by the election officials at polling units to the WTV Data Center. In this vein, with the results assembled from the sampled polling units, citizens can release projected estimates and verify the accuracy of results declared by the election management body.