EU recommendations and quest for electoral reforms in Nigeria

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The European Union (EU) Election Observation Mission last weekend released a mind boggling report of the 2019 general elections which showed that the polls were marred by severe operational and transparency shortcomings, electoral security problems and low turnout.

Findings of the report exposed grave issues that culminated into the near sham experienced before, during and after the last elections, such as the failed attempt to improve the electoral law sequel to the decline of presidential assent to the 2018 Electoral Act Amendment Bill, pressure on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), problematic distribution of the Permanent Voter Card (PVCs) and acrimonious party primaries.

Others include, antagonistic campaigns, ineffective and unenforced campaign finance, unbiased media reportage, insecurity -incidents of violence, late opening of polling units and poor following of procedures, high number of vote cancellation, insufficient transparency in collation of results, high levels of anomalies and missing data in result sheets, controversial sacking of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, electoral impunity, obstruction and harassment of the Civil Society, decreased women participation, disenfranchisement of many internally displaced voters and very low nomination of people with disabilities.

Based on these findings, the EU report made 30 recommendations that could be used by INEC and other stakeholders in the electoral process to bring about reforms that would enhance the smooth, transparent and credible conduct of future elections, particularly the 2023 general elections.

The EU report is coming at the time the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has indicated the interest to embark on reforms that would better the conduct of future polls.

Mahmood Yakubu, INEC chairman, while receiving the EU delegation ahead of the public

presentation of its report of the 2019 general elections said, the EU EOM report is coming at the right time as it will feed … Read More...