2019 Election: Kaduna stakeholders want INEC to kick -start Process
By; ALEX UANGBAOJE, Kaduna.
Participants at a workshop organized by Centre for Research and Documentation (CRD) reflecting on the 2015 general elections in Northern part of Nigeria has called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to kick start preparations for 2019 electoral process now in order to overcome some of the unnecessary challenges encountered during the 2015 general elections.
They said until INEC makes the issue of 2019 election a priority, Nigeria may as well face some avoidable problems as it was during the last elections.
According to them, late preparation almost hampered the last elections which resulted in postponement that almost led the Nation into chaos.
They identified low level of sensitization by INEC, poor distribution of Permanent Voters Card (PVC), late arrival of election materials, non adherence to the principles and operations of card reader in the use of PVCs which gave room for under aged voters as some of the problems.
The participants at the Workshop which took place in Kaduna on Monday were made up of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), Persons with Disability, Traditional and Religious leaders, Youth leaders and Journalists.
In their submission, they recognised the role of card reader in the improvement made in the 2015 general elections and charged INEC to do everything possible to perfect the electronic voting system in the country, saying if banks can achieve the registration of Bank Verification Number (BVN) within a short space of time why can’t INEC do same.
The election stakeholders also commended the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan for swiftly accepting the election results and congratulating President Buhari as according to them, that averted major crises in the country.
They equally praised the contributions of the social media which they said gave opportunity to citizens to monitor the election.
They urged INEC to be sensitive to the plight of women and physically-challenged persons by providing special facilities to carter for their needs within the polling units.
While commending INEC for improvement recorded in the last elections, they called on it to do everything within its ability to make electronic voting system a reality in the country.
They therefore urged INEC to regulate all funds utilised in elections by political parties and to also ensured that accreditation and voting are done simultaneously in subsequent elections.
Declaring the workshop open earlier, Executive Director of CRD, Mallam. Ahmad Mohammed said the objective of the meeting was to take a critical look at the 2015 general elections and to develop a concept note on how to improve on subsequent elections by INEC.