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A non-profit organization, 1001+Voices Initiative for People Empowerment, has reacted to “the recent imbroglio that attended the session of the Federal House of Representatives, where the discussion on the controversial section 52(3) of the Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill 2021.”

According to a statement signed in Uyo by its Executive Secretary, Mr. Uwem-obong Ankak, the group said “Nothing could be as disheartening as observing those with the People’s mandate to defend good governance trying hard to turn the hands of the clock backwards.”

“1001+Voices Initiative for People Empowerment deplores in strong terms the passage of an Electoral Act that dims the prospect of electronic transmission of results even when the electoral body, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the National Communication Commission (NCC) and the telecoms operators have confirmed the confidence that modernizing the voting system through electronic transmission of results is possible. We believe the argument that the rural communities in Nigeria, with low network coverage, could be stifled during elections does not stand, because it is on record that rural network penetration during the Edo State 2020 election was hugely successful.”

“Far from sounding partisan, 1001+VoicesInitiativeforPeopleEmpowerment believes Nigeria is ripe enough for an electronic voting system which is the most robust framework to encourage participatory democracy in this digital age.We are strongly of the opinion that democracy thrives only in transparency, and with strong institutions.”

“Politics itself can only grow on integrity. The era of phony elections in Nigeria should be over; so is scuttling the credibility of the electoral process, thereby endangering democracy. The hidden agenda by some political actors, who out of self-aggrandizement, do not want our democracy and by extension, the electoral system to move forward and accord with international best practice must be told the truth. We, therefore, join voices with fellow compatriots to denounce all forms of inept representation in the hallowed chambers of the National Assembly, and urge President Muhammadu Buhari to rescind assent to the muddied Electoral Act as amended and passed,” the concluded.

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