Candidates contesting for various elective positions in Zamfara State have signed a peace agreement as part of pro-active measures to forestall violence before, during and after the forthcoming general elections.
The exercise which was supervised by the Assistant Inspector General (AIG) of Police in charge of zone 10, Mr Bala Hassan had in attendance governorship, National Assembly, and State House of Assembly candidates from various political parties, heads of security agencies, traditional rulers and foreign observers.
Addressing the candidates, the AIG enjoined them to comport themselves orderly during their campaigns and warned that the police and other security agencies would deal decisively with any candidate or group found to be involved in political violence. He also cautioned them to stop making unguarded utterances that are capable of breaching the peace before and during the elections.
On his part, the State Governor and Candidate of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Abdulaziz Yari expressed confidence on the capability of the Police to provide adequate security during the elections, and also added that the President has the constitutional powers to deploy the military for the elections if he deem it fit based on the security challenges facing the country.
The purpose of the gathering was to remind candidates and their supporters of the political parties codes of conduct signed in 2013. The code of conduct stipulates the ways political parties should conduct themselves during their campaigns and elections.
Speaking earlier, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Abubakar Wara urged political parties to approach the elections in accordance with the provision of the Electoral Act.
He Assured them of the commission’s readiness to conduct a credible, free and fair election.
The candidates at the event were unanimous in their call for a level playing ground for all parties by the security agencies. They also harped on the need for the police and all other security agencies to remain neutral.
The candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and incumbent governor of the State, Abdulaziz Yari, his Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) counterpart and former governor of the State, Mahmud Shinkafi, and the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) candidate, Sani Shinkafi were in attendance at the event held at the State Police Headquarters.
Others were the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPA), Peoples Progressives Alliance (PPA) and People for Democratic Change (PDC), Mega Party,KOWA, NCP, CPP, Labour Party,SDP, ACD, PPN and ACPN.