Former Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan has said the credibility and legitimacy of electoral processes are hugely dependent on the competence, impartiality and independence of electoral management bodies (EMBs).
Jonathan stated this in South Africa after emerging Chairman of the African Union’s International Summit Council for Peace (ISCP), a body consisting mainly of African former Presidents and ex-Heads of State.
Speaking on Friday at the International Leadership Conference in Johannesburg, South Africa, where he emerged as the chairperson of the newly inaugurated ISCP, the former president urged the body to set minimum acceptable standards for appointment of the leadership of electoral commissions.
This he said will build citizens’ confidence and ensure credibility of elections on the continent.
Government officials, former African Heads of State, clergy and traditional rulers from across Africa were in attendance at the two-day conference tagged ‘Africa Summit and Leaders Conference 2019′.
Jonathan, in a keynote speech titled ‘The Need for Good Governance and Peaceful Electioneering Process in Africa, the former president stressed that many African nations face election-related crises in cases where the citizens have no confidence in the electoral process, especially when they suspect that the election umpires do the bidding of the partisan appointing authorities.
He also noted that almost all the EMBs in Africa are identified with the prefix ‘Independent’, but the jury is still out on whether these agencies are truly independent as their names imply.
In a bid to deepen democracy in the continent, Jonathan, therefore, urged the African Union to establish minimum standards and benchmarks for constituting electoral management bodies and encourage member-nations to ratify such declaration.
2019 Poll: Political parties created logistics problems for us -INEC
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said that a large number of political parties that participated in the 2019 general elections created a lot of logistics problem for the commission.
Speaking with newsmen in Ilorin, Kwara state’s capital, Mohammed Haruna, the National Commissioner in charge of Kwara, Kogi and Nasarawa States, revealed that there were 799 litigations from the 2019 general elections across the country.
INEC organised a workshop in Kwara to review the 2019 general elections.
According to the National Commissioner, Jigawa had no petition from the election, Kwara had only three petitions and that Imo topped the list with 77 petitions.
Haruna, who further stated that there were over 800 million pre-election cases across the country that arose from political parties’ primary elections said something needed to be done about the numbers of the political parties registered.
“So you can see that with these kinds of problems we had, there is really a need to look at the number of political parties.
“We really need to do something about the 91 political parties, not just the quantity which generally speaking, the public has begun to complain that 93 political parties are on the high side,” he added.
While noting that 76 political parties contested for the Presidential election, he admitted that this was the source of the serious logistics problem that the commission had.
“We underestimated the kind of logistical problem that implied the size of the ballot papers, result sheets and so on.
“By the time these materials started arriving, we realise that it was a huge logistical problem.
“We are lucky, we had the Nigerian Air Force to help with the movement of the materials, they have always been helping us,” Haruna said.
“Nigerian Universities Are Slow In Discoveries,” Says Buhari
“Despite Nigeria independence for over 58 years, Nigerian Universities are slow in discoveries and intervention”
The President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari urges Universities across the nation to key into the efforts to be innovative through discoveries in order to help the country development at large, NIGERIA NEWS reports.
However, the Presidential representative and the former deputy Governor of Kano State, Prof. Hazif Abubakar speaks on behalf of the president at the fourth convocation of the Federal University, Dutsinma, FUDMA, Katsina state on Saturday.
Prof. Abubakar states that “Research, critical thinking, moral dispositions, discoveries, and inventions should find natural habitats in our universities, as they do in several other universities in the world.
“Universities are supposed to be strong drivers of the country’s development initiatives for sustainable development.”
“It is not heart-warming that in our over 58 years of independence, Nigerian universities are slow in discoveries and inventions.”
Mr. President said that is administration is bound to perform in the area of creating more structures and facilities across the tertiary institutions in the country. He said training acquisition program would be dispensed through various interventions program.
He also urges that FUDMA and the Sokoto River Basin Development Authority develop a smooth partnership in order to restructure the agricultural sectors and channel out scientific support to the local farmers.
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