The immediate past governor of Delta State, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to sign the Electoral Bill into law in order to improve the nation’s electoral process.
According to him, the President’s doing so will also tackle anomalies which were evident in the just-concluded general elections. Uduaghan is a chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC.
Uduaghan spoke on Tuesday as the guest lecturer at the inaugural Public Lecture series in his honor by the Professor B.I.C. Ijomah Centre for Policy Studies and Research, University of Nigeria, Nsukka.
Speaking on the topic: “Making Nigeria’s Election Cleaner, Transparent and Credible”, the APC chieftain also called for a gradual release of funds to INEC and prompt punishment of electoral offenders to serve as a deterrent to others.
￼He said, “I call on Mr President to sign as early as this year, the electoral act after due amendment has been done by the National Assembly.
“Secondly, there should be a gradual release of funds to INEC should begin with the 2020 appropriation bill. A manual should be developed and used by the security agencies for election security management.
“Third all those arrested for violating the electoral laws should be punished expeditiously as lessons to others.
“Obviously, the setting up of the election offences’ court has been overdue and should be set up as quickly as possible. INEC should be more rigorous in its selection of ad hoc staff. This should be done on time and series of training conducted long before the election, to allow for local people to identify partisan officials that might slip through the cracks.”
He further asserted that the role of INEC is central to everything concerning electoral politics.
“Is INEC truly independent and capable; not just in Abuja but across the various states, local governments and wards? If I am being fair, I would say that INEC standard has not been kept across the states, local governments and wards. I call on INEC to closely reset its team on the ground.
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