Ahead of the upcoming November Gubernatorial Elections in Anambra state, the Youth Initiative for Advocacy Growth and Advancement (YIAGA) has urged elections observers to respect all electoral rules and regulations in the course of observing the elections. YIAGA also said that elections observers should give 100 percent commitment to the process of observing and reporting electoral process.
This was revealed by the YIAGA Executive Director, Samson Itodo during the WatchingTheVote (WTV) training of Master Trainers and State Focal Points in preparation for the elections in the state. According to Mr. Itodo, Watching the Vote program is geared towards enhancing credible elections via the use of data and technology as he urged trainers to be dedicated while reporting accurate information from the electoral process. While giving a general overview of the importance of elections, he reminded the trainers that election is a process which involves other pre-elections activities and thus the WTV team will focus on the entire process holistically.
During the training, trainers who will, in turn, train observers were put through the process and importance of elections observations as they are urged to remain non-partisan in order to avert in form of interference with the elections process. Trainers were also put through the use of statistics and information to tabulate elections result for the purpose of verification. WTV trainers also learned their responsibilities of recruitment and training of observers as they also learned the use of checklists and other forms used during elections observation. Practical sessions on documenting results and sending coded Short Message Service (SMS) heralded the training sessions.
YIAGA’s #WatchingTheVote is an advanced observation methodology that uses well-established statistical principles and sophisticated information technology for reporting and assessment of electoral activities. The Youth Initiative for Advocacy, Growth & Advancement (YIAGA) is a civic hub dedicated to the promotion of democracy, accountability and citizens’ participation. In pursuit of its goal of enhancing the quality of elections, YIAGA deploys citizens’ observers to observe the conduct of activities within the electoral cycle under its Watching The Vote project. This is informed by the need to deepen electoral integrity and accountability. Through its network of election observers, YIAGA promotes the conduct of elections in line with democratic principles and global standards.