January 23, (THEWILL) – The Albino Foundation (TAF) has unveiled plans to mobilise 700 observers to monitor the 2023 general elections across the country.
The Programme Manager of the Foundation, Mrs Ndifreke Ferdinand, disclosed this at the weekend, during a one-day capacity-building workshop.
Ferdinand said the mobilisation of the observers would help in giving an accurate assessment of the election procedure.
She further disclosed that PWDs have 36 Candidates contesting for various positions in the forthcoming election.
Earlier, the Founder, Albino Foundation, Ambassador Jake Epelle, called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to adequately make provision for devices available for Persons With Disabilities (PWDs), in the forthcoming general elections.
He explained that with the required assistive devices, PWDs would be able to cast their votes without stress.
Ambassador Epelle said the Foundation, in its efforts to ensure inclusive election, had launched an “Able 2 Vote Guide”, created a Disability Dashboard, as well as launched an “Election Hub App”, which will be real-time video and real-time text.
He said the Foundation would continue to educate PWDs on how they can vote with ease, towards entrenching an inclusive society.
Epelle appealed to the media, which he described as strategic partners, to give more visibility to issues about PWDs to make their voices heard and their votes count.
In a welcome address, the National President, Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Comrade Chris Isiguzo, urged Journalists to engage in developmental Journalism rather than circulating fake news.
Comrade Isighzo commended the Albino Foundation for building the capacity of journalists and noted that the NUJ had trained over 2000 members in the last 3 months ahead of the General Election with a view to achieving effective coverage.
He advised Journalists to contribute their quota to nation-building towards having credible elections by verifying their findings to promote free and fair elections devoid of sentiments and bitterness.
“If that story will not bring people out of squalor, if that story will not reduce poverty, if it will not pull Nigerians out of ignorance, you are not doing Journalism. Let us not do Journalism that is centred on mercantile interest, let our Journalism be development-oriented, not Journalism that destroys the entire system.
“As Journalists, we must also ensure that our reports represent the truth, factual and not fictional, verifiable and authentic. Before you talk about that story, ensure you know the origin. We must take note of the tiniest of details as far as this election is concerned. Avoid fake news, misinformation, propaganda and yellow journalism”, he added.