LANW Says task of accomplishing free, fair election, collective responsibility of all.
By: Femi Mustapha
Legal Awareness for Nigerian Women (LANW) has said the
task of accomplishing a free and fair election is a collective duty shared by the government, voters, observers, electoral bodies and all stakeholders.
The Acting Executive Director, LANW, Mrs. Hannatu Ahuwan, asserted this while presenting the Gubernatorial and State House of Assembly Elections observation report to the media in Kaduna on 22nd March, 2023.
According to her the conduct of the electoral process as observed by LANW went smoothly with less hitches and irregularities and every stakeholder played their part in a manner that is commendable.
She added that this demonstrates a collective expression of interest in the protection and promotion of common democratic values by citizens and other stakeholders to ensure a peaceful, free and fair electoral process.
Mrs Hannatu Ahuwan, explained that LANW with support from Christian Aid is implementing the Improving Inclusive Participatory Governance Systems Project aimed at improving citizens’ participation in governance processes.
“As part of the activities towards encouraging civic responsibility and ensuring a transparent electoral process, LANW trained and supported election observers in 86 polling units across all wards in Jaba, Jema’a, Kaura and Zangon Kataf LGAs to observe the 2023 Gubernatorial and State House of Assembly elections that took place on March 18th, 2023′
The LANW Acting Executive Director, stressed that In the future, consider conducting all the elections in one day as against the current practice.
” This is cost effective, will reduce the untold hardship endured by voters during elections and also address the issue of low voter turnout for the Gubernatorial/State House of Assembly elections.
“To reduce the high number of invalid votes recorded in both elections, INEC, other government agencies responsible for voter education and the civil society, need to improve on the sensitization drive towards educating the citizenry on how to vote rigging
” INEC and law enforcement agencies need to look into containing vote buying and voter suppression at polling units by party agents.
“We look forward to improved performance in future elections, especially from the electoral bodies, especially INEC
“”The 2023 Gubernatorial and State House of Assembly elections, compared to the 2023 Presidential and National
Assembly elections started earlier, which is a demonstration that INEC took into consideration and corrected some of the lapses of the previous election.
- ” INEC officials were reported to arrive on time and voting commenced early in 80 polling units except for 6 polling units in Jema’a and Jaba LGA where materials arrived behind schedule and voting started a bit late.” She said