The Executive Director, Conscience for Human Rights and Conflict Resolution, Comrade Idris Abdul Miliki has described as alarming the discovery of about 70,000 multiple registrants found in Kogi voter register alone as disclosed by the Independent National Electoral Commission, (INECl.
Miliki however described the improvement in the 2022 amendments as contained in the Electoral Act as a work in progress that must be commended.
He noted that the new Electoral Act greatly helped in improving the conduct of the Ekiti Governorship election, saying that ahead of the 2023 General elections, CHRCR would sustain it’s Sensitization and engagement with citizens.
The Executive Director, also berated political parties in Nigeria for turning electorates into Commodities which they believed that can be purchase at will.
Comrade Miliki, was speaking at the opening of a one day Post Primaries Engagement with Political Parties, Organized by CHRCR in Partnership with Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre ( CISLAC) on prioritizing Anti Corruption and Accountability Issues Towards 2023 Elections.
The one day Engagement is with the support from Mac Arthur Foundation.
The ED stressed that while it is unfortunate that the Political parties are the culprits in votes buying, the electorates who sell their votes are also culpable as there won’t be buyers if there are no sellers.
Miliki said though, if there are no sellers there won’t be buyers, blamed Political parties for not doing enough in Political Education and enlightenment, which he said was the major reason for the desperation to buy votes.
While Comr. Miliki decried the pitfalls of the nation’s elections owing to vote buying which he pointed out has taken a new dimensions, from wholesale buying at the primaries just held across the State, to the anticipated retail vote buying in the coming elections, praised the introduction of the BIVAS machine as another improvement in the nation’s Electoral system.
The Executive Director who described vote buying and selling as a criminal offense, tasked Political parties to incorporate anti corruption and Accountability Issues in their manifestoes ahead of the 2023 Elections.
Comr. Miliki stressed the need for the inclusion of more vulnerable and marginalized groups throughout the election processes in 2023, appealed that when party‘s engaged in issues based campaign, it would go a long way in checking vote buying.
The various Political parties present at the meeting all made commitments to fighting issues of corruption, pointing out that efforts is on for all the candidates.
The Political parties said they have document which has been handed over to candidates of the parties who emerged at the Primaries to take corruption issues seriously, alluded hunger and poverty as reason for votes buying and selling.
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