Gabriel Yomere, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in Cross River, has emphasized the importance of Nigerians exercising their right to vote and holding underperforming political leaders accountable.

Speaking at the second quarter consultative meeting between the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and civil society organizations in Calabar, Yomere urged citizens to reject the notion that politicians should automatically serve two terms regardless of their performance.

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Yomere expressed concern over the poor voter turnout in the 2019 and 2023 elections in Cross River. Determined to address this issue, he sought the support of civil society organizations to mobilize citizens and encourage their active participation in the electoral process.

Recognizing the vital role of these organizations, Yomere emphasized the need for collaboration between INEC, security agencies, and civil society to achieve meaningful results.

During the meeting, Nsikak Ikpeme, Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association in Calabar, highlighted the dissatisfaction of the electorate with the electoral process during the 2023 governorship election in Cross River.

He urged INEC to adopt technology to ensure a credible electoral process, which would help rebuild confidence and trust in the system.

Abdulkadir Ibrahim, a commissioner from the NASFAT organization in Cross River, commended INEC for organizing the meeting and called for more frequent engagements between the commission and civil society.

Julie Agbor, President of the National Council of Women Society, also urged INEC to involve more women groups in its activities to deepen grassroots mobilization and ensure broader representation.

As Nigeria strives for a more inclusive and accountable democracy, Gabriel Yomere’s call for citizens to exercise their voting rights, hold leaders accountable, and actively participate in the electoral process serves as a catalyst for positive change.

It is crucial for INEC and civil society organizations to work together to create an electoral system that instills confidence, encourages citizen engagement, and strengthens democracy at its core.