‘2 months to 2019 polls, 140,000 PVCs unclaimed in Sokoto’
With just a few weeks to the 2019 general elections, a total of 140,000 Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) are yet to be collected in Sokoto State.
The Head, Voter Education, Muhammad Musa, stated this at a one-day workshop on election coverage and launch of a book titled, Election Coverage: A journalist’s Guide.
“We still have about 140,000 Permanent Voters Cards in our offices waiting for collection,” he said.
Speaking on media and the 2019 elections, the way forward, Musa said, “a free and fair election is not only about the freedom to vote and the knowledge of how to cast a vote, but also about participatory process where voters engage in debate and have adequate information about parties, polices, candidates and the election process itself in order to make informed choices”.
He noted the indispensable role the media play in a democracy.
“The media are essential to democracy, and a democratic election is impossible without the media,” he said.
He advised journalists and media houses to maintain high level of professionalism, accuracy, and impartiality in their coverage, while also urging them to suppress hate speech.
Delivering the Lead paper, Malam Muhammad Sajo Sanyinna, stressed the need for election coverage to be fact based, cautioning that inaccurate reporting may swing the outcome of election.
Sanyinna, who emphasized the need to address hate speech, mentioned ways to counter it to include education on media ethics, encouragement of conflict sensitive reporting and ending impunity on hate speech among others.
Also speaking, Sokoto State Deputy Governor, Mani Dan’iya, underscored the importance of qualitative information dissemination.