UK threatens sanctions over violence in Edo, Ondo elections


Following in the heels of sanctions on election riggers in Nigeria by the United States of America, USA, the United Kingdom, UK, embassy in Nigeria has also threatened to sanction anyone connected to election violence in the build-up to, and during elections in Edo and Ondo states.

In a statement on Tuesday, via its Twitter handle, the UK said it will send observers for the upcoming elections in both states and might consider restrictions on travels to the UK, access to UK-based assets and prosecution.

It tweeted: “As we all rebuild from #COVID19, countries must continue to embrace the tenets of #Democracy – Transparency, responsiveness and accountability.

“We look forward to seeing peaceful #Edo and #Ondo states elections, where the mandate of the people is respected and protected.”

The embassy also said Catriona Laing, UK High Commissioner to Nigeria, has met with leaders of All Progressives Congress, APC, and Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, during which she called for a hitch-free election.

The statement read: “As a friend and partner of Nigeria we are closely following the lead up to the off-cycle governorship elections in Edo and Ondo states scheduled for September 19 and October 10 respectively.

“These elections are important, both as an essential element of effective governance within both states and an indicator of the strength of Nigeria’s democratic institutions.

“We will be deploying observation missions to both the Edo and Ondo elections and supporting civil society led observation.

“The UK takes a strong stand against election-related violence and, just as we did in the general election in 2019, will continue to take action against individuals we identify as being responsible for violence during the elections.

“This could include restrictions on their eligibility to travel to the UK, restrictions on access to UK based assets or prosecution under international law.

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