23rd June, 2010
Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, the convener of the Save Nigeria Group, Pastor Tunde Bakare, and other eminent Nigerians have called for a fresh voters register for the 2010 general elections.
This demand was made at a rally organised today by the SNG at Onikan Stadium, Lagos, Nigeria.
The rally was to sensitise Nigerians on the need to demand for credible elections and it was largely attended by numbers the civil society group, politicians, students and members of the public.
In his speech, Soyinka said that Nigerians have allowed themselves to be cheated of their votes.
“Very often, people donâ€™t appreciate what they have. You have a vote and allow people to snatch it from you. What defines a place is a lack of will. Over 100 million people have allowed a bunch of rogues to deny them,” he said.
Soyinka said Nigerians are behind the new INEC chairman and President Goodluck Jonathan as long as they do what is right.
Governor Fashola in his own contribution urged Nigerians to come out and vote. “I do not accept that it is not possible to produce a credible votersâ€™ register. Technology is the answer. If it requires us 10 days to stay at home, so be it. It is one day that will determine our gain or pain â€“â€“ election day.”
The Lagos governor said that he did not believe that Nigerians need to deploy 20,000 policemen on the day of election as if there is war, but people should rather protect their votes.
The SNG convener, Bakare, made a similar call for a fresh votersâ€™ register.
He said this is the time for younger Nigerians to participate in the election of their representatives.
Other speakers like former FCT minister, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, Publisher of Ovation Magazine, Dele Momodu, Joe Okei-Odumakin, Mr. Ayo Opadokun, Prof. Pat Utomi, Chief Bisi Akande, and Gen. Alani Akinriade called for fresh voters register, a free and fair election and condemned the shenanigans in the National Assembly.
Also present at the occasion were artistes, Daddy Showkey and Rooftop Mcs, who thrilled and encouraged the audience with their songs.