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2023 elections: women to march for peaceful polls in Lagos

Women from all walks of life will on Thursday, February 2nd, 2023 embark on a peaceful march in Lagos State Nigeria as part of efforts to promote awareness for issue-based campaigns by political parties and their aspirants and peaceful participation in the general elections with the presidential and national assembly polls taking place on on February 25, while the gubernatorial and state assembly elections holding on March 11, 2023.

The exercise, according to the West Africa Network for Peacebuilding, Nigeria (WANEP-Nigeria), and Urgent Action Fund Africa (UAF- Africa) is geared to enhance individual capacities on the need to exercise their fundamental rights as citizens of Nigeria in a well organised and peaceful manner devoid of violence.

The One-Day walk, will commence at the premises of the Lagos state television (LTV8) along Agidingbi road and terminate at the state secretariat Alausa where they will present a report to the state Governor, Mr. Babajide-Sanwo Olu as disclosed by the organisation.

Addressing journalists in Lagos on Tuesday, National Coordinator of WANEP-Nigeria, Chief. Dr. Bridget Osakwe said the organisation, which is the largest and organised peacebuilding network in Nigeria has noted with deep concern the persistent spate of insecurity and violence in the country with untold consequences on the lives and livelihoods of the citizenry, especially during elections.

She said the increasing rate of violence has created instability in the country and disrupted the lives of men, women, and children with a grave impact on the nation’s economy and community livelihoods.

Dr. Bridget explained that “we seek to create awareness and advocate the need for oneness and a violent free 2023 elections. Elections in Nigeria have been of major concern to its citizenry, as many are frightened by violent incidents that may occur and most especially its effect on women and children.”

The WANEP National Coordinator commended the laudable efforts of the federal government and the Lagos state and the various peacekeeping units’ agents for their efforts in ameliorating the reoccurring violence and crime in the country and ensuring that there is peace in the upcoming 2023 elections.

“The reoccurring violence Nigerians experience during elections is a dilemma we face as a country, but it should not stop us from doing what we can, to defend and bring back sanity, tranquility, and most importantly a violent free 2023 elections to our beloved country.

She added that “as a Civil Society Organisation committed to the promotion of peace and stability in the country, WANEP-Nigeria hereby calls for constructive collaboration with relevant key stakeholders towards finding a lasting solution to this hydra-headed problem.

We recommend the adoption of a system-wide strategy to protect and defend the rights, lives, and dignity of the citizens as well as promote sustainable and peaceful elections in Nigeria.”

Dr. Bridget Osakwe pledged “the organization’s commitment to stand with the relevant authorities and stakeholders in carrying out these noble efforts and is also willing to contribute its quota to ensure lasting peace and a violent free 2023 elections is achieved in the country. We look forward to uniting to advance our common agenda to leave no one behind and sustain peace in our country.”

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