The Independent National Electoral Commission has promised to display the voters’ register for the 2019 general election in the 80,809 wards scattered across the country. The Chairman of INEC, Professor Mahmood Yakubu made the pledge in Abuja at the weekend while chairing a conference on Electoral Integrity in Nigeria: Tackling Corruption in the Country’s electoral
The Independent National Electoral Commission has promised to display the voters’ register for the 2019 general election in the 80,809 wards scattered across the country.
The Chairman of INEC, Professor Mahmood Yakubu made the pledge in Abuja at the weekend while chairing a conference on Electoral Integrity in Nigeria: Tackling Corruption in the Country’s electoral process organized by the Centre for Democracy and Development.
The INEC boss said after the display which would last for the number of days required by law, the final voters register would be cleaned up and all uncollected PVCs would be quarantined in the national headquarters of INEC, assuring that the commission wants to be as transparent and open as possible and thereby enhance integrity of the electoral process.
Leading discussion on the session titled: Securing a New Standard of Electoral Integrity for Nigeria (2019 in View), Mr. Festus Okoye, INEC Commissioner, said assessing the credibility of electoral process would depend on, its compliance with constitutional framework; procedural issues as well as the state and actions of key stakeholders.
He said credibility of the electoral process would assess the pre-election activities, the election day activities and the post- election activities. He said the African Charter on Democracy which urges the independence of Election Management Bodies also recommends that substantial amendments to electoral laws should not be made at least six months before a major election.
He canvassed that all amendments to the constitution and the Electoral should be put in place early enough so as not to disrupt the electoral process. And, also highlighted a danger in the constitutional provision that stipulates the conduct of another presidential election within seven days in case the first ballot does not produce a winner in accordance to the constitutional provision.
“It is almost an impossibility to conduct another presidential election within seven days for logistic reasons. There is a proposal to change this to 21 days but that has not been attended to” he said.
Mr. Okoye further named some maladies to be cured to have a smooth electoral process. These include, ignorance and the believe that election is an all-comer-affair. Stakeholders should become conversant with the Electoral Act and other laws and guidelines governing election. He said, we should get rid of deliberate or intentional mischief.
He said Nigerians should understanding the pyramid in the electoral process starting with the electoral management body, the political parties, security agencies, election monitors and observers etcetera and called for the building of a national bulwark against vote buying which is a big threat to Nigeria’s democracy.