Official: INEC alone can’t tackle inconclusive elections

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By Fateema Idris

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says addressing the challenge of inconclusiveness in future elections is a collective responsibility of all stakeholders and not the commission alone.

Alhaji Baba Shettima, the National Commissioner supervising Bauchi, Gombe and Yobe states said this during the commission’s post-election review in Gombe State on Saturday.

Shettima said the commission was already working towards improving 2023 general elections, adding that the nationwide review of the 2019 elections was to get areas where such improvements would be needed.

“It is not INEC alone that will improve on elections in the country. Although election is our responsibility but the political parties and other stakeholders must also improve on their ways of doing things.

“For example, something like simple primaries, some (political) parties are not able to hold all that properly. Things like violence, snatching of ballot boxes and even the lackadaisical attitudes of the electorate and their fundamental right of voting.

“It is the responsibility of (political) parties to raise the consciousness of the electorate in the area of coming out to vote as the only way to get good governance.

“Everybody has a role to play; on our part, we are training and retraining our staff as well as updating our equipment to be able to hold future elections.

“We are ready to conduct a more credible election in 2023 as an improvement on the 2019,” he said.

He said the outcomes of the review from all states would be used to get a clear-cut policy for future elections, adding that the exercise would inform INEC of its strengths and weaknesses from the 2019 general elections.

On his part, Alhaji Umar Ibrahim, Gombe State Resident Electoral Commissioner expressed confidence that the exercise would bring out the unique areas that needed improvements.

Ibrahim, therefore, called on all participants to exhaustively discuss all their experiences during the just concluded elections, adding that their contributions would strengthen the electoral process and the credibility of future polls.

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