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Citizens’ Perception Ahead of the 2024 Edo State Gubernatorial Elections: CLEEN Foundation Charge Stakeholders on Preparations

Citizens’ Perception Ahead of the 2024 Edo State Gubernatorial Elections: CLEEN Foundation Charge Stakeholders on Preparations

Citizens’ Perception Ahead of the 2024 Edo State Gubernatorial Elections: CLEEN Foundation Charge Stakeholders on Preparations


Democracy in Nigeria has had a very colorful journey. After twenty-five years of the Fourth Republic, we are at a point where it is entrenched, with specific trends emerging. As the countdown to the Edo gubernatorial election continues, the political landscape of the state is fraught with intrigue, defections and strategic alliances.  Amidst this backdrop of intrigue and ambition, critical findings from our assessments are that there is a palpable sense of disillusionment among the citizens regarding the electoral process.

Recently, the Independent National Electoral Commission collaborated with CLEEN Foundation in Benin, Edo State to commence a voter education and advocacy exercise. The task was to cover “Continuous Voters’ Registration” and “Civil Education” in some Senatorial districts in the State, with a special focus on the youth and women demographic. Interestingly, the locals were receptive and willing to participate in the CVR process. INEC also made it possible for issues around transfer requests misplaced and defaced cards to get replacements.

This process, however, was not devoid of public concern, with many complaining that the voting centres had server downtime, leading to registration delays. Addressing the Youth movements in Edo State, especially those who just turned 18 years was rather encouraging with a huge turnout with varied requests, but getting the buy-in of the local market traders posed a challenge, as they majorly asserted that hope was bleak for credible elections in Nigeria and that votes don’t count.  For some others at motor parks and marketplaces, there was an eagerness to understand the participation process fully.

From this recently concluded exercise in Edo State, CLEEN Foundation charges INEC to note the following as gathered by the public;

– LOGISTICAL PREPARATIONS: From the CVR exercise, it was clearly established that the turnout was much more than the voter materials needed for registration. For a large constituency, having just one machine and few personnel is sure to induce frustration as a lot of people would have to abandon their businesses and itinerary for a longer period of time.

INCREASED GRASSROOT SENSITISATION: The exercise in itself is laudable; however, there is a need for more permeation at grass-roots levels and in other communities, aside from the few covered. It is highly unlikely that other people will become aware of this exercise in the coming months, which can ultimately affect the number of registered voters on Election Day.

– VOLUNTARY COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION:  A lack of voter education & registration has led to widespread political apathy and low voter turnout. This has undoubtedly undermined the trust in and legitimacy of our democracies. INEC educating people about their voting rights and how to exercise them is therefore of great importance as it helps the locals’ take up responsibility to channel the information to a wider reach. It is also beneficial with the translation of key messages to local community dialects and pidgin as well as the follow-up process with PVC collection.

– TRANSPARENCY IN ENGAGEMENT: Some locals reported that they were asked to pay “money” or “bribe” before participating in the CVR process. INEC should fish out those responsible for such sabotage.


– CLEAR INFORMATION POINTS: There is need for printouts to be made available for the public to check if their cards are in various centers or on the CVR portal.

– NO SECURITY PRESENCE: With the action of thugs and the burning down of some of these voter points and offices, the need for security is non-negotiable at times like this. Low voter turnout and apathy is also largely attributed to the lack of security agencies.

Call to Action

We urge all stakeholders, including political parties, candidates, INEC and security agencies, to sustain the stability in the state and promote respect for the democratic process. We call on all eligible voters to exercise their right to vote and to do so peacefully.

Monitoring and Observation: We urge INEC to monitor the pre-election process and ensure compliance with democratic standards.

CLEEN Foundation encourages the good people of Edo state to come out en masse to exercise their franchise and reach the CLEEN Election Security Support Center (ESSC) toll–free line to report any public safety breaches. “By voting, we add our voice to the chorus that forms opinions and the basis for actions – Jens Stoltenberg.

For more information, please visit or download the CLEEN mobile app.

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