‘Why Nigeria Should Adopt Electronic Voting’
A political scientist and businessman, Sir Chidozie Godwin Chibuka has advocated the use of electronic voting to ensure the credibility of the electoral process in Nigeria.
Chidozie who was exchanging views with The Vortex in his office in Port Harcourt, expressed dissatisfaction with the infractions that characterize the various elections since the advents of democracy in Nigeria.
He expressed displeasure that after 20years of democratic dispensation the country has yet to go beyond the experiences of its nascent democratic processes.
Chidozie who is the Managing Director of Gonenc Energy Resources Co. Ltd lamented that the last election in the country was characterized by thuggery, ballot snatching and other forms of malpractices, adding that many people were disenfranchised because of fear of violence and molestation by political things and security agents.
He described as unfortunate, the refusal of President Mohamadu Buhari to sign the Electoral Bill passed by the National Assembly, emphasizing that the operation of the law would have helped to checkmate the crises that bedeviled the last election held in the country.
The idea of inviting the politicians to come together and sign peace pact or accords would not have arisen, “if the new law was signed he stated.
According to the businessman, in America, people can stay in their houses and vote; as issues of vote snatching or violent attacks on opponents are nonexistent there”, stressing that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has not been innovative enough in the conduct of election.
He wondered why INEC had to postpone election less than 24 hours to the polls despite having over 3years to prepare for the election; saying it was a huge embarrassment to Nigeria.
If the Central Bank of Nigeria could mandate Banks to migrate to electronic banking and they quickly comply then INEC can equally use its budget to start electronic voting in the country., he stated.
Commending the president government for some of its socioeconomic polices especially in agricultural sector, Chidozie regretted that the Buhari government has focused more on the fight against corruption without laying out proper plans to tackle the economic needs of the people.
He said many people in the country had wished for change of government in the last election which according to him did not work out and charged the Buhari administration to be reviewing its economic plans and policies, during its second term.
He lamented the level of suffering in the country, alleging that some of the policies of the government were being used to witch-hunt, destabilize, and checkmate the opposite.
He called on Nigerian leaders to lead by example, saying that Nigerians are suffering because leaders have chosen to remain insensitive to their plights.
The businessman criticized militarization of the last election by certain forces within the federal government and warned that the practice if not stopped will certainly politicize the Armed Forces and substantially erode the respect and integrity of the military institution in the country.