- Some international observers have called on President Muhammadu Buhari to sign the amended Electoral Act
- The observer group said the bill if signed will help to facilitate and regulate a proper conduct of subsequent elections in the country
- According to the group, the federal government should create election tribunal in order to prosecute offenders of the electoral processes
An International Election Observer group, Pan African Women (PAN) projects that monitored the General elections in Nigeria has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to assent to the amended electoral Act.
Mphoentle Keitseng, the publicity secretary of PAN project 2019 who monitored Governorship and House of Assembly elections in Akwa Ibom made the appeal during an interactive session with newsmen in Uyo on Wednesday, March 13.
According to her, the electoral bill will help to facilitate and regulate a proper conduct of subsequent elections in the country.
She noted with dismay that the just concluded governorship and house of assembly elections were marred with irregularities such as vote buying, ballot box snatching, intimidation, thuggery and disruption of voting process.
Keitseng harped on the need to review the electoral act in order to help strengthen the electoral process.
She called on federal government to create election tribunal in order to prosecute offenders of the electoral processes.
Keitseng decried heavy presence of military personnel in polling units which she observed was scaring voters.
She advised the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to improve on arrival of materials and election kick off at the gubernatorial and state of assembly elections.
“We commend the transparent and credibility exhibited by INEC in Akwa Ibom in conducting free, fair Presidential/National Assembly and Gubernatorial/State House of Assembly elections,” said.
Keitseng also advised INEC to recruit ad-hoc staff that were above 30 years of age for sensitive positions as polling officers because as many polling officials who were young lacked the maturity to take decisions on time, especially where violence erupted.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that the acting chief justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Muhammad, on Monday, March 12, urged judges across Nigeria to always protect the interest of Nigerians in the court of law.
Muhammad while speaking at the opening ceremony of the 2019 refresher course for judges and kadis at National Judicial Institute in Abuja said democracy could only thrive in the country when fundamental rights of the citizens, epitomized by free and fair elections, were respected.
Vanguard reports that Muhammad also said that the judiciary as the only arm of the government constitutionally vested with powers to reconcile the interest between “the powerful” with those of “the voiceless poor", judges must make effort to ensure fairness in the election tribunals.
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