Election law amendment does not guarantee free voting – INEC
The chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Professor Mahmoud Yakubu, said on Sunday that changing the electoral law without committing stakeholders to act differently could not guarantee free and fair elections.
Yakubu said this in a speech on his behalf by INEC’s National Commissioner for Information and Voter Education, Festus Okoye, at a three-day Joint Technical Committee Retreat on Election Law Amendment. 2020, which ended in Abuja on Sunday. …
The head of INEC expressed gratitude to the Senate INEC Committee and the House of Representatives Electoral Committee; work together to create a new legal framework for the conduct of elections.
However, he said: “It should be borne in mind that a change in electoral legislation will not automatically guarantee or lead to better governance and elections.
“The Constitution and the Election Law can only be effective through the actions and inaction of the most important stakeholders in the electoral process.
“The Constitution and the Election Law can improve the electoral process if the electoral body, political parties and electoral participants, security agencies, the media and civil society organizations perform their functions effectively.
“Democracy and electoral processes in Nigeria will become more resilient if key players decide to restore the sovereignty of the people as the real determinant of the outcome.
“This new momentum is timely and needs to be sustained and addressed with history and urgency in mind.
“The reform should have an effect and should be completed by the first quarter of 2021.”
The Federation Attorney General and Justice Minister Abubakar Malami (SAN) in their speech promised to work with the technical committee to ensure the president’s unhindered consent to the bill.
Malami, represented by the Special Assistant to the President for Justice Reform and International Relations, Ms. Juliet Ibekaku-Nwagwu, said: “I will continue to work more closely with the National Assembly to ensure that the bill is passed as planned. “
Senate INEC Chairman Kabiru Gaya said, “We received 24 written memoranda and oral presentations from various constituencies. There is no doubt that we have more than enough valuable materials to take into account. “
Also at the event, Sam Waldock, head of the Office of Governance and Stability at the UK Office of Commonwealth and Foreign Development, said the UK has since invested more than £ 50 million in electoral processes in Nigeria. 2015
He said: “The UK is a proud supporter of elections and democratic processes in Nigeria. Over the past five years, the UK has invested over £ 50 million in Nigeria’s democratic process.
“We recognize Nigeria as the largest democracy in Africa and a leading member of the Commonwealth of Nations.
“Therefore, it would be good to have a reliable comprehensive system well before the general elections so that proper preparation can be done.”
Source: – Punch ng