European Union deploys 39 observers for Nigeria general elections

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The European Union has announced the deployment of a 39-member Election Observation Mission in Nigeria.

The mission will observe the Presidential, National Assembly, Governorship and State Houses of Assembly election, which are slated for February 14 and 28.

A statement by the Press Officer of the EU Observation Mission, Eberhard Laue, which was made available to Daily Times in Abuja, yesterday, stated that at the invitation of the Federal Government, the mission will assess the elections, against national law and international principles for elections contained in regional and international law and standards.

According to him, nine analysts of the core team arrived Abuja from January 6, following an advance team that was deployed during the party primaries last November and December. He said 30 long-term observers arrived since January 12.

Our correspondent, however, learnt that the mission will be boosted by a delegation from the European Parliament and a group of European Union diplomats serving in Nigeria.

In 2011, the EU had deployed 120 observers from 27-member countries to monitor the elections across Nigeria.

The European Union Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) is led by Santiago Fisas Ayxela, a member of the European Parliament from Spain, who will arrive Abuja later this week.

”The EU EOM’s extended presence shows the union’s commitment to the conduct of inclusive, transparent and credible elections in Nigeria. We don’t just focus on the election days, but on all aspects of the electoral process, including the arbitration of petitions long after voting is finished,” Chief Observer Santiago Fisas Ayxela noted in the statement.

The observer team will conduct a comprehensive analysis of the entire electoral process. This, Laue…said, will include assessing the legal framework, the performance of the election administration, voter registration, candidates’ nomination and political parties’ primaries.

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