By Marie-Therese Nanlong.
Jos – The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC has stated the Commission’s readiness to assist States Electoral Commissions to conduct elections using Smart Cards Readers so as the attain integrity and fairness in the conduct of elections.
INEC Chairman, Professor Yakubu Mahmood said this yesterday at the 12th delegates’ conference of the Forum of States Independent Electoral Commission of Nigeria, FOSIECON held in Jos, the Plateau State capital.
Mahmood represented by the National Commissioner, Information and Voter Education, Barrister Festus Okoye said, “The independent national electoral commission will support any state independent electoral commissions that signify their intension to deploy the smart cards reader SCR in the conduct of local government elections. The Commission is working toward reviewing areas where it had challenges during the 2019 general elections, to perfect future polls.”
Speaking on electoral malpractice, the INEC spokesman revealed that vote buying and selling was prominent in the just concluded 2019 general elections only better legislation can curtail vote buying.
Also, Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong while declaring the two day event opened, lamented that electoral malpractices had made citizens lose confidence in governance stressing, “Electoral malpractice for instance, erodes confidence and legitimacy of government globally. I therefore urge participants to brainstorm on how to henceforth hold credible, free fair and acceptable elections with the ultimate aim of strengthening democratic governance in the country.”
The delegate conference had in attendance, 36 chairmen of state independent electoral commission, with key stakeholders from the INEC, to present papers at the event.