Hate speech, use of hard drugs pose serious threat to polls

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A non-governmental Organisation, CleenFoundation, has warned that hate speech and misinformation by the media remains a critical threat to credible elections.

It also identified widespread availability and use of hard drugs as serious threat to the electoral process, especially in the northern part of the country.

Its Executive Director, Dr. Benson Olugbo disclosed this while presenting findings of its nationwide Election Security Threat Assessment (ESTA) in Abuja.

He said the survey, which was conducted in the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), uncovered other factors that may endanger the process. They are: proliferation of arms, insurgents, godfatherism and marginalisation of vulnerable groups, among others.

He said electoral umpire and security agencies must reassure Nigerians that they are, indeed, neutral to forestall any form of violence during and after the polls. 

He, however, noted that despite the numerous threats to the conduct of the elections, majority of Nigerians are optimistic that the nation would have a peaceful poll.

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