Situation Room raises fears over vote-buying, says it’s a threat to electoral system | Ripples Nigeria
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Situation Room raises fears over vote-buying, says it’s a threat to electoral system

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Situation Room delivers damning report on 2019 polls, says election not free, fair & credible

Fears have once again been raised over the alleged commercialisation of votes in Nigeria by desperate politicians – an issue that was reported during the just concluded Edo State governorship election.

A coalition of over 70 human rights organizations, under the aegis of Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room, raised the alarm on Monday stating that politicians were increasingly investing money in vote buying, noting also that voters appeared willing to sell their votes.

The group in a statement issued by its Co-convener of the NCCSR and Executive Director, Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre, Clement Nwankwo, described the trend as a threat to electoral system.

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Nwankwo said, “The menace of vote trading, which includes buying and selling, appears to be deepening in Nigeria’s elections. Politicians are increasingly investing money to buy votes with voters appearing to be willing to sell their votes. In the Edo State election, this practice was widespread with all of the major political parties engaging in this infringement.”

The group, which called for a more effective enforcement of election laws added, “Situation Room calls on the National Assembly to move quickly and urgently proceed with legislative action to ensure the passage of the Electoral Offences Commission Bill that creates a body to enforce respect for election laws.

“Overall, the Edo State governorship election was violence-free to the relief of stakeholders who had feared that the violence-laden rhetoric of the election participants could pose a threat to peaceful elections,” Situation Room noted.

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