Mr Samson Itodo, a political analyst, on Tuesday in Abuja, urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to
deploy improved technological mechanisms that would guarantee the integrity of future elections in the country.
Itodo, who is also the Executive Director of Yiaga Africa, a Civil Society Organisation (CSO) and Convener of Not-Too-Young-to-Run movement,
made the call in a telephone interview with News24 Extra.
He said that aside using smart card readers, Nigeria should start thinking of other technologies which could improve elections in 2023 and beyond.
He expressed concern that the country was confronted with the challenge of logistics over the years, adding that it had affected the smooth conduct of elections.
According to him, the problem has become perennial and must be addressed.
He said that the adoption of electronic accreditation, voting and computation of results were part of measures that would enhance the electoral process.
He added that “we need to start thinking about doing away with ballot papers and result sheets and start computing results electronically as a way of
cutting down cost and prevent waste of public resources.
“This will also go a long way in deepening the integrity of out elections.
“By 2023, we might hit 100 million registered voters, imagine the number of ballot papers INEC will produce.
“So, we need to start thinking of electronic accreditation as well as electronic voting in our elections.
“I think it is very important that we consider that,’’ Itodo said.
Itodo said there was need to review the laws that guide party nominations to move from sale of paper forms to purchasing them electronically.
He said “If political parties can go online to sell their forms, it will be better because the more papers we are producing, the more trees we need
to cut and this has some environmental implications.
“Beyond candidates’ nomination process, the posting of voters register at the polling units as prescribed by the law can be done electronically.
“INEC already has its website where people can check their voting status.
“It is possible that we decentralise this further so that by using text messages, people can check their voter registration status online.
“These are range of issues that should form the cardinal points of agenda toward more credible polls in our build-up to 2023 elections,”