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YIAGA AFRICA’s Watching The Vote (WTV) is the largest non-partisan and independent movement of citizens observers committed to electoral integrity and playing an active role in the Osun 2018 governorship election. On August 3rd 2018, YIAGA’s WTV deployed Long-Term Observation (LTOs) to Osun state to observe the pre-election environment. This report is the
third in a series of four (4) to be released by YIAGA, which also highlights findings of observations from the first and second reporting phase. In the previous pre-election environment’s report, we presented our findings regarding activities of major political actors, voter education campaigns, activities of marginalized groups and threats of violence. Now, in the third period, the concerns in pre-election observations include building early warning signs, informed advocacy and documenting stakeholders’ engagements in the pre-elections environment.
Summary of Findings:
Compared to the first and second reporting period, there is an impressive preparations by Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) across the entire state (29 of the 30 LGAs);
Voter education activities undertaken by both INEC and CSOs were observed during the current reporting period. However, YIAGA WTV LTOs were not exposed to voter education workshop by either INEC or CSOs in Olorunda, Atakumosa East, Ife South, Ife Central, Ife East, Ilesha West, Oriade, Ayedaade,Ayedire, Ede North, Egbedore, Ejigbo, Iwo and Ola-Oluwa LGAs;
Voter education programming and messaging targeted at marginalized groups such as: youth, women and people with disabilities (PWDs) has been consistently observed by WTV LTOs since August 3rd 2018 in Atakumosa East,Atakumosa West, Boluwaduro, Ede North, Ede South, Ife South, Ife North, Ifedayo, Ifelodun, Ilesha West, Irepodun, Isokan, Odo-tin,
Ola-Oluwa, Orolu and Osogbo LGAs; Partisan Senior Civil Servants were observed canvassing for votes for political candidates’ in Boluwaduro, Osogbo, Atakumosa East, Irewole and Iwo LGAs;
Violations of the Electoral Act were observed in some LGAs of the state. These include;
Voter inducement through the distribution of money and gift items by politicians and their supporters in Boluwaduro, Boripe, Ifedayo, Ifelodun, Irepodun, Odo-Otin, Olorunda, Osogbo, Ife East, Ife North, Ife South, Ilesha West, Ayedire, Ejigbo, Irewole and Iwo LGAs of the state,
Violent physical/verbal attacks in Boluwaduro, Ifedayo, Ifelodun, Ila, Irepodun, Osogbo, Ilesha West, Atakumosa West, Atakumosa East and Ife North LGA. Inciting statements in Orolu and Iwo LGAs and
Vandalism or destruction of properties in Ilesha West, Isokan. Atakumosa West, Atakumosa East, Ifedayo,and Iwo LGAs
Hate speech, violence or intimidation against candidates or people because of their age was reported in Boluwaduro LGA and hate speech against political candidates or their supporters because they have a disability was reported in Atakumosa West LGA.