"The Candidates for the forthcoming elections in Abia State have signed peace accord as an oath for a violence free elections binding on all of them. Speaking during the event organized at Vision Africa premises by Hope Givers Initiative in partnership with Vision Africa Radio, the Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu implored the INEC to ensure free and fair elections. The Governor said he stands for peace in the State and expressed confidence in the capacity of the INEC in ensuring equal playing ground. In his address, the Commissioner of Police, Okon Ene, who was represented by Godwin Ako assured of adequate security in the State and enjoined Abians to participate fully at the elections. Speaking, the Abia State Resident Electoral Commissioner , Dr. Joseph Ilo said the peace accord would reduce election violence in the State. He stressed that INEC in Abia State would continue to propagate peace and credibility in the elections and appealed to all to eschew violence and play politics devoid of bitterness. Dr. Ilo said revealed that the electoral umpire in the State would ensure a level playing ground for all contestants. The President, Vision Africa Bishop Sunday Ndukwe Onuoha called on politicians to deploy issue-based campaign and avoid hate speech and unguarded utterances. He urged candidates not to allow the outcome of the election to divide Abia State. The organizer of the event and Director General of Hope Givers Initiative , Onyeka Udegbulam enjoined the contestants to talk to their followers and ensure no violence is witnessed in the State stressing that it is Incumbent on the candidates to calm their supporters down and ensure peace reigns. Of all the functional 37 political parties in Abia State, only nine candidates, including the three leading governorship contestants; Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, Dr. Alex Otti and Dr. Uche Ogah were present at the signing of the peace accord, while four doves were released signifying peace in Abia State.