The United Nations (UN) says large number of political parties participating in elections pose great challenge in West Africa and the Sahel.
Special Representative of the UN Secretary General for West Africa and Sahel, Mr Mohamed Ibn Chambas stated this during his visit to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Thursday in Abuja.
Chambas, who is also and Head of the UN Office for West Africa, said it is important to start looking into the number of political parties and their mode of registration within the sub-region.
The UN official said the large number is a challenge for electorate to make informed decisions during elections; especially in countries were many people are illiterates.
Chambas said that the UN would be happy to work with INEC in its plan to review the 2019 general elections to address the issue and some other challenges.
“We came here seeking to be part of that structure conversation moving forward. We will be particularly interested in a number of issues which INEC chairman has already identified.
“Issues such as political parties- number, mode of registration, internal democracy, accreditation of party agents, etc.
“The number of political parties in certain elections in West Africa Sahel sub-region has posed a challenge recently. Not only here in Nigeria. We need to look into the number of political parties, their mode of registration etc.
“Recently in Senegal this same challenge was faced and they are now trying to address it.
“Next door in Benin Republic, they were confronted with 249 registered political parties. They are also finding how to handle this.
“In the last election in Nigeria, many of you will recall that there were 73 presidential candidates and we have more political parties.
“Many people have even referred to the ballot paper as table prof. on the account of its length and breath,” the convoy said.
Chambas said that the UN would also be interested in engaging INEC on issue of inclusiveness, involving participation of women, youths, and persons living with disabilities in elective offices in particular, and electoral process in general.
Other areas of interest to UN according to him include issues of gender and youths representation.
Chambas, who also commended the peaceful inauguration of the 9th National Assembly, also stressed the need for a great country such as Nigeria to improve on gender representation in both chambers of the assembly.
He commended INEC for organising peaceful general elections that led to peaceful transition of government.
Chambas said that his visit was to see how to strengthen the institutional relationship between UN and INEC, not just during elections but off election season.
He said the UN is keen in finding out how it could be helpful, supportive and be part of the process that would strengthen the capacity of INEC to better deliver in future elections.
“For us it is very clear to us, if we are talking on consolidation of democracy, stability, development of this country, they all start with being able to deliver peaceful, credible elections that have the confidence of the majority of Nigerians.
“It is known that a stable Nigeria democracy, prosperous Nigeria is good for West Africa and for all Africa.’’
In his remarks, INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, assured Nigerians that the commission would start its engagement with the 9th National Assembly on the reform of electoral legal framework early.
Yakubu said that there was need to focus attention on the electoral legal framework among several areas of reform.
He said that long before the 2019 general elections, INEC submitted detailed proposals for the amendment of electoral laws but it did not materialise.
“We had useful interaction with the 8th assembly. We also submitted extensive proposals for the improvement of the electoral legal framework for its consideration.
“We were assured by the leadership of the last assembly that work on the electoral legal framework will be concluded by December 2016.
“Unfortunately, the process dragged on for so long and became even more difficult to conclude as the general elections approached. I want to assure Nigerians that, as always, we will start early.’’
Yakubu expressed hope that INEC would conclude the ongoing review of the 2019 general elections in the next two months.
He said that the commission had commenced debriefings with all its field staff to learn from them the successes and challenges faced in the planning and implementation of the general elections.
Yakubu said the commission would also hold extensive meetings with political parties, civil society, security agencies, the media as well as other stakeholders.
“Immediately thereafter, we shall engage with the leadership of the 9th assembly. There is so much work to do but little time ahead of us.
Yakubu commended the Secretary General on his goodwill message and support as well as his presence during the last general elections.
“We look forward to any suggestions that you may have for improving the electoral process in Nigeria as we prepare for future elections,’’ he said.
Edited by Angela Okisor
- FCT police arrest traditional ruler over murder of officer
- Community policing will address insecurity, says APC Governors
- TetFund to construct N500m library at Fed. Varsity Gusau
- Bolivia cut-off diplomatic relations with Cuba
- Education in serious crisis, say stakeholders at UN
- We didn’t direct decommissioning of metres by DisCos – NERC
- FG lauds UNHCR services in Nigeria
- NAF postpones induction ceremony of newly acquired Agusta power helicopters
- Northern/Southern leaders hold peace talk in Lagos
- Rerun: INEC pledges credible elections in all polling units
- Attacks: CAN urges harmony between Xtians, Muslims
- India reiterates commitment to increased defence collaboration with Nigeria
- C/River Gov’t assures of timely completion of General Hospital Calabar
- TI report on Nigeria unfair, untenable- ICPC
- UI offers admission to 4,359 out of 19,482
- Banking sector gross credit grows by N2trn in 7 months – Emefiele
- NAF set to induct 2 new Augusta Attack helicopters for combat operations
- Human encroachment triggers infectious diseases- Lagos Commissioner
- Gov. Obiano begins payment of N30,000 new minimum wage in January
- Egypt will continue to strengthen African unity -Envoy
- Be more patriotic, promote indigenous airlines operating in Nigeria, says Onyeama
- 20th NSF: Osun official promises better performance
- Gov. Zulum inaugurates Security Trust Fund, 3 other boards
- Corps members conduct sanitation exercise at Plateau hospital
- ATBU Teaching Hospital celebrates 10-year anniversary
- 2020 UTME registration: JAMB takes measures against erring CTB centres in Nasarawa
- No amount of blackmail ‘ll discourage 9th Assembly from supporting FG
- Re-run elections: I-G orders security beef up in affected states
- Ikeja Electric upgrades network in Akowonjo, Abule-Egba business units to improve power supply
- Sudan signs initial political, security deal with rebel group
- FG seeks support in returning out-of-school children to classes
- Buratai emerges Daily Asset Man of the Year
- Militant sentenced to five years for abandoned Berlin bomb plot
- UK’s Prince Charles urges Middle East peace, visits grandmother’s tomb
- C/River Assembly not investigating PZ Wilmar -Speaker
- Gov. Zulum tasks emergency response team to contain Lassa fever
- Nigerians spend over N300bn yearly on malaria treatment – Virologist
- DPR denies resuming kerosene supply to Cross River
- Group offers free surgeries to 60 indigents in Kwara
- Solskjaer urges patience with Manchester United’s rebuilding project
- EU officials sign withdrawal deal, appoint ambassador as Brexit looms
- Housing: Labour signs MoU with FMBN in Ondo
- Conjunctivitis: Demand for Sun glasses increases in Enugu
- White House hopes for impeachment to wrap up next week
- Coronavirus: Doctors urge FG to step up screening at airports, borders
- Egypt’s ex-president Mubarak undergoes surgery, son says
- Man docked for allegedly threatening DPO’s life
- Britain decries U.S. decision on extradition refusal
- Airtel launches new number range, 0904
- Second case of coronavirus confirmed in the U.S
- UNICEF tasks FG, State Governments on youth development
- More than 1m Ethiopians receive humanitarian aid in 2019 – IOM
- UNICEF reaffirms support to PAN’s pneumonia control
- EU steps up support for conflict victims in Nigeria
- Plateau Police command gets new spokesperson
- London police to deploy live facial recognition cameras
- Kwara govt will seek to eradicate drug abuse, poverty through sports, deputy governor says
- Nigeria deploy 185 troops to Guinea Bissau for peace keeping mission
- Polaris Bank pledges continued disbursement of salary advance to customers
- Large explosion rocks Houston, at least 1 person hospitalised
- Pension Team rejected N2bn bribe, EFCC witness tells court
- Tunisia’s PM-designate says new gov’t to have no more than 25 ministers
- French ministers sign off on pension reforms amid large protests
- Desert locust likely head toward Uganda, South Sudan, Ethiopia
- Gov. Obiano restates commitment to Anambra Airport road project
- Foreign Reserves: CBN not contemplating devaluation of currency
- Don stresses need for home-grown technology to solve health challenges
- Gov. Lalong extends hands of fellowship to opposition
- Edo 2020: Lagos wins S/West Zonal Eliminations
- Sokoto rerun election: Police assure of adequate security
- Delta to demolish unapproved outdoor adverts, structures
- Pantami inaugurates NIGCOMSAT board
- Ejigbo LCDA seals off Kenmoore Motors on court order
- Group to trains medical practitioners on automated healthcare services in Lagos
- FG inaugurates $1bn National Agric Mechanisation Committee
- Gov. Ishaku signs Taraba’s N215bn 2020 budget into law
- Development: Nasarawa Commissioner drums support for Gov. Sule
- Monetary committee increases cash ratio from 22.5% to 27.5%
- Rugby: Vegas Sportswear proud to associate with Nigeria, plans to promote sports in Africa
- Trump’s peace plan may polarise Middle East: Palestinians
- At least 21 dead, 20 missing as heavy rains lash Madagascar
- Foundation launches history club in FCT schools
- Centre trains 37 officers in sexual exploitation, abuse, gender
- New signing Odriozola could make Bayern debut against Schalke – Flick
- NSE: Market capitalisation sustains growth with N19bn
- U.S. Vice President Pence meets pope, jokes ‘You have made me a hero’
- NSF 2020: Edo to engage 1,000 cleaners
- IPPIS: ASUU threatens `No Pay, No Work’ over FG plan to stop salaries of lecturers
- Helen Paul advises women to appreciate self
- Intl’ Day of Education: Education key in achieving 2030 SDGs agenda, says Lagos lawmaker
- Barca meet Leganes in Copa, Real Madrid to face Zaragoza
- US consulate commends Dorian charity home initiative in Ondo
- Court remands 2 over alleged murder, possession of firearms
- Enters ‘Operation Last Dance’, Actors’ Guild movie on war against insurgency
- CAF Confederation Cup: Rangers gunning for win in Cairo, says Team Manager
- Federer survives huge scare to reach last 16 on freaky Friday
- Osaka still searching for ‘champion mentality’ after Melbourne loss
- Du Toit adds SA Rugby prize to crown of world’s best player
- Experts seek alternative investment instruments to deepen financial markets
- FA fines Manchester United for failing to control players
- Brighton turn Mooy’s loan deal into permanent contract
- NUJ mourns Ronke Fajemirokun
- We’ll protect you against multiple Taxation, NFVCB assures Lagos filmmakers
- Finance Bill signed into law favours common Nigerians- Lawyer
- Vandalism: NRC MD appreciates effort of police in protecting Railway property
- Environmentalist seeks measures to discourage air pollution
- See your businesses as sustainable, not mere hustling, Expert advises entrepreneurs
- Germany ‘well-equipped’ to handle China virus, no cases so far
- Biosafety agency calls for collaboration from stakeholders on National Biosecurity Policy
- Farmer harps on value chain of pigs, urges more research into benefits
- Lassa fever: Medical doctor canvasses cat-keeping
- FOU Zone B of NCS seized goods worth N400m in January – official
- Akeredolu seeks more synergy among agencies to tackle insecurity
- Buhari meets EU Commissioner, assures an end to conflicts in Northeast
- Lassa fever: 76 persons test positive in Edo
- NIMET prediction: NGO calls for massive sensitisation
- Lukashenko accuses Russia of overcharging Belarus for oil, gas
- Buhari assents to agreement on Transfer of Sentenced Persons between Nigeria and Macao
- We’ll promote secondary production, value-chain system for economic growth in Oyo – Economic Adviser
- Group urges FG to extend border closure to 2023
- Company director faces N59.9m theft charge
- NFVCB burns illicit movies worth N100m in Lagos
- Alleged unlawful suspension: court fixes Jan.27 to hear suit against OGZAA
- FRSC records 2 crashes, no death during “Ember” months in Badagry
- EU executive ‘very concerned’ about rule of law situation in Poland
- Russia invites NATO countries to take part in Int’l Army Games 2020
- Buhari felicitates Sen. Amosun at 62
- Herder woman saves husband from wolf attack in Mongolia
- Court remands alleged fake lawyer
- Locust infestation poses threat to food security in East Africa
- Police arraigns 3 men over alleged possession of guns
- Putin appoints former government officials to new posts
- LG dissolution: Malami’s letter not only to Oyo govt – Ex-Attorney General
- Couple in court for allegedly assaulting landlady over rent refunds
- EU official says Turkish accession process should not be interrupted
- Killings: NANS wants more protection for students in North-East
- China takes solid steps to cut overcapacity
- Adamawa Govt. reintroduces promotion examination for senior civil servants
- FCTA collaborates with WACS to offer free surgeries
- Man bags 2 years imprisonment for posing as a woman to secure maid job
- Foundation advocates improved government collaboration with NGOs, DPOs
- My husband hits me, injured me in my eye – woman tells court
- JAMB to commence admission into ITF’s MSTC in 2020 session – ITF DG
- Church worker in court for allegedly stealing N180, 100
- Lagos-Ibadan rail: Amaechi says there’s remarkable improvement on work
- Driver docked over alleged reckless driving
- Rising debt not unusual for emerging economy, says ex-CBN Director
- NUJ president seeks support for proposed journalism enhancement bill
- Businessman denies stealing truck load of petrol worth N15. 75m
- Amotekun: Ondo monarchs urge Southwest governors to kick-start operation
- Sickle Cell: Expert urges Nigerians to run multiple genotype tests
- Court remands 5 for allegedly robbing at gunpoint
- Woman in court for allegedly stabbing rival with broken bottle
- Yam thief jailed 6 months in Abuja
- Edo: farmers association seeks FG’s support to boost productivity
- Borno: Zulum pays N30,000 minimum wage to civil servant in Borno
- 48 die in Ogun road accidents in 35 days
- Adamawa Fire Service generated N2.5 million revenue in 2019 – official
- Ignore antimicrobial resistance at your own peril – India High Commissioner
- We’ll provide legislative support for Amotekun-South West Speakers
- International Day of Education: NGO commends Kaduna Govt.’s free education policy
- Court remands 2 men for allegedly raping, murdering Maersk MD’s wife
- Tennis-Big-serving Raonic knocks out Tsitsipas in straight sets
- Serena’s record bid foiled by Chinese battler Wang
- Driver in court over alleged N108,000 fraud
- Delta govt. to partner research institutions to develop comprehensive agric policy
- We’ll fish out killers of ‘Oko Oloyun’-Oyo police
- Assembly pledges more support to Zakkat commission in Sokoto
- Edo Govt. empowers 158 poultry farmers
- Cotton association partners CBN to resuscitate CTG sector
- Court discharges vagrant charged with wandering
- Saleswoman docked for allegedly stealing from supermarket
- Lassa fever: Expert tasks FG on increased awareness
- Plateau records 5 cases of Lassa fever – Commissioner
- Djokovic puts on serving masterclass to breeze past Nishioka
- Ile-Arugbo demolition: Court fixes March 2 for report of settlement
- Man docked over alleged N287,000 property theft
- 37m people affected by lockdowns as China tries to curb virus
- NYSC member donates reading glasses to 240 patients in Kano
- Expert urges FG to invest more in welfare of nurses, midwives
- Applicant admits stealing 16 SIM cards
- Edo 2020 NSF: KDSG hails athelets’ performance at zonal eliminations
- NAFDAC urges herbal medicine vendors to obtain product registration
- Bricklayer in court over alleged cultism, displaying dangerous weapons
- Tennis-Wozniacki waltzes into retirement with dreams fulfilled
- Estate agent in court over alleged theft of N1. 156m rent
- Defending champion Osaka fizzles out of Australian Open
- Bank IT expert in court for allegedly stealing N507,000 from customer’s account
- IPMAN pledges to continue training tanker drivers
- CP Inuwa confirms death of 2 in leadership tussle in Delta
- Send your child to school or be prosecuted – Kaduna Govt
- Italy watchdog launches non-compliance proceedings against Facebook
- NPA tackles congestion at Lagos Port Complex
- Rerun Election: Tambuwal sues for peace, ready to work with oppositions
- Kano re-run: Police assure residents of peaceful election
- Man kills wife with hoe in Niger
- NDA Kaduna expels cadets for indiscipline
- UTME: NSCDC warns CBT operators against extortion of candidates
- Nasarawa NMA suspends warning strike
- ‘Champion of Integrity’ award excites Bauchi pensioner who returned N1m excess gratuity