With the Edo State governorship election barely four days away, candidates of all the political parties in the state on Tuesday signed a Peace Accord.
The deal which was organised by the National Peace Committee was held in Benin City, the state capital.
Speaking during at the historic Peace Accord Signing ceremony, the chairman Independent Electoral Commission, INEC,Prof Mahmood Yakubu said the commission remains neutral, adding that the choice of Edo voters will be respected in the election.
“I wish to assure you of INEC’s commitment to credible elections. The votes will count. The people of Edo State will determine who becomes their next governor. Their choice will be upheld.
“Let me also reassure you and the voters in Edo State of the commission’s neutrality. I call on all political parties and their candidates to abide by the letter and spirit of the peace accord,” he said.
Speaking further, Yakubu charged the political candidates to allow the signed Peace Accord serve as a covenant between them and the people of the state urging them to maintain peace before, during and after the September 19 election to avoid bloodshed.
In his speech, Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Sokoto, Mattew Kukah, compared the signing of the Peace Accord to the exchange of vows which he said must be kept sacred.
In attendance is the Chairman, National Peace Committee and former Head of State, Abdulsalam Abubakar, member of the committee and Catholic Bishop, Catholic Diocese of Sokoto, Matthew Kukah among others.
Also, members of the political, traditional, and religious circles were there to witness the signing, to pave way for the smooth conduct of the exercise.