Ahead of the 2019 general elections, registered political parties in the country have adopted and signed the reverse code of conduct for political parties to guide their operations before, during and after the conduct of the general elections.

The code of conduct sets the parameters of acceptable behavior for political parties, their candidates and their supporters throughout the electoral cycle.

While the Deputy National Chairman (North) of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Lawal Shuaibu led 54 other political parties to sign the reversed code, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) led the 24 parties that were conspicuously absent at the event.

The adoption and signing was witnessed by the National Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in charge of Election and Party Monitoring, Prof. Anthonia Okorie-Simbine after a two day workshop on the validation of the code organised by the Political Parties Leadership and Policy Development Centre of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS).

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Speaking at the signing ceremony, Prof. Okoosi-Simbine, who represented the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu assured the parties of the commitment of the Commission to ensure a level playing field for all political parties in the conduct of elections in the country.

Prof. Simbine said INEC remains committed to strengthening its internal systems and providing a level playing field for all political parties and candidates by ensuring the sustenance of a credible electoral environment.

She said further that political parties as principal actors in the electoral environment will no doubt play a significant role towards the success of the 2019 General Elections and beyond.

According to her, “it is vital that political party leaders take their commitment to the code of conduct beyond the official signing of the document by translating the provisions of the code to visible actions that impact positively towards sustaining and enhancing the gains of Nigeria’s democratic evolution.

“By contributing to and signing the code of conduct, political parties have indeed committed to a pact with Nigerians that their activities will, going forward, be consistent with international best practices and enhance the confidence of citizens in our evolving democratic culture.”

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