INEC Struggling To Breathe, Unbundle It – YIAGA

Samson Itodo said the electoral commission is currently struggling to operate effectively due to the heavy responsibilities vested in it.


Samson Itodo says INEC needs to be unbundled.

 

The Executive Director of YIAGA Africa, Samson Itodo, says that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is struggling to catch its breath and needs to be unbundled.

Itodo spoke on Tuesday at a Citizens’ Townhall on Electoral Reforms event in Abuja while addressing issues hindering the effectiveness of Nigeria’s electoral system.

The YIAGA director said that the electoral commission is currently struggling to operate effectively due to the heavy responsibilities vested in it.

He advocated the establishment of an electoral offences commission and a political party regulatory and registration commission to ease the burden on INEC.

“There are five key priorities that we put on the agenda; the first one is the need to unbundle INEC. As it stands, INEC needs to breathe. INEC is struggling to breathe because there are enormous responsibilities vested in the electoral commission,” he said.

“So the need for an electoral offences commission, the need for a political party regulatory and registration commission is critical and Nigerians want an INEC that is unbundled.”

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According to him, Nigerians are demanding independence of the electoral commission, adding that there is a need for a review of the appointment process of national and resident electoral commissioners to prevent the appointment of individuals with political affiliations.

The YIAGA director proposed that all election petitions should be concluded before the swearing-in ceremony, noting that this will boost public confidence in the electoral process.

Additionally, Itodo said Nigerians are advocating the compulsory use of electronic means to transmit results, adding that it is aimed at enhancing transparency and efficiency in the electoral process.

He further added that there is a demand the expansion of voting net.

“Nigerians are also asking that diaspora voting and early voting for critical stakeholders in our electoral process, such as INEC officials, election observers, security agents and all officials who are on election duty on election day; they should be able to cast their votes, including prisoners or inmates,”  he said.