Gov. Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has urges media houses to enlighten Nigerians on the need for electronic transmission of election results to save the nation’s democracy.
Wike stated this on Wednesday in a statement issued to newsmen by Mr Kelvin Ebiri, the Special Assistant to the Governor on Media in Port Harcourt.
Wike, in his remark after he was conferred with the “Gold Prize for Exceptional Leadership,” by the ThisNigeria Media Newspaper in Abuja, said it’s important for Nigerians to know why the electoral act amended should be signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said considering the importance of the Electoral Act amendment to the survival of the nation’s democracy, the media ought to deem it a priority to exert pressure on the President to sign the amended Act.
According to Wike, as watchdog of the society, the Nigerian media should enlighten Nigerians on the benefits of both direct and indirect primaries.
“Who are those to benefit more if the direct primaries are conducted. Who are those to benefit more if it is indirect primaries. So, it is important that Nigerians should know why there should be electronic transmission of result in order to save our democracy,” he said.
The Governor said the only way those in positions of authority can become accountable to the people, is when electoral process is free and fair.
Wike commended the INEC for the successful conduct of the just-concluded Anambra State governorship election.
He urged Nigerians to always deemphasize their ethnic and religious affiliation in order for the country to achieve the desired national cohesion.
“There is the need for all of us to still believe that this country must be united. But, if we want to move forward, we must drop the issue of where you come from, We must drop the issue of where you worship. Overemphasis on these things causes a lot of disintegration and which is not the best for us,” he stated.
In his Speech, Gov. Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State, who is also the Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, said the country is going through tough times.
Fayemi, who was also the Chairman of the Occasion, said that the current travails of the country also offer opportunities for the emergence of a great nation.
Similarly, Bishop Mathew Kukah, the guest speaker, who delivered the inaugural lecture with the theme, “National Cohesion for Sustainable Growth and Progress: The Nigeria Dilemma” blamed the drafters of the Nigerian constitution for the country’s lack of national cohesion.
Mr Eric Osagie, the publisher of ThisNigeria, explained that Wike was conferred with the flagship award of the newspaper because of his exceptional leadership in the vanguard of infrastructural revolution.
According to Osagie, the “Gold Prize for Exceptional Leadership, is usually bestowed on that man or woman who has impacted exceedingly in the lives of Nigerians and in whose legacy have potentials of transcending time and space.