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1,799 Journalists Accredited To Cover 2019 Polls, Says INEC

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The 2019 general elections was the most extensively covered event of the year, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said.

According to INEC, 1,799 journalists from more than 150 domestic media organisations were accredited to cover the polls.

INEC chairman, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, stated this at a meeting with the Media to review the 2019 general elections in Abuja yesterday.

Yakubu disclosed that there were 332 journalists from 52 foreign media organisations from different parts of Africa, the Middle East, Europe, the Americas, Australia and Asia that covered the elections.

He said now that the elections are over, it was time to re-examine the entire process with a view to consolidating the successes and establishing a template that would address the challenges faced by journalists, adding that, the meeting is to discuss all the salient aspects of the process which require improvement.

“The Commission wants to hear from you how processes can be improved upon from pre-election activities such as the Registration of Voters, conduct of primaries and nomination of candidates by political parties, campaigns (including election debates by candidates) to Election Day activities such as accreditation of voters, voting process (including more effective measures to stem vote buying), collation and declaration of results.

“The Commission would like you to share your field experiences, observations and recommendations on all aspects of the election from logistics, election technology, security, media accreditation, coverage of the elections, adequacy and effectiveness of public enlightenment drive by the Commission, access to information by the Media, access to political parties and candidates as well as issues of misinformation, dis-information, fake news, hate speech and more.

“We look forward to your robust contributions and recommendations. The whole purpose of today’s meeting is how we can improve on processes and procedures for which you were not only reporters but observers and actively involved in several ways. Today, we will talk less and listen more to you”, Yakubu said.

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