2019 Election: Too many political parties reason we didn’t perform better – INEC says

The Nigeria electoral management body, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has attributed too many political parties that contested the 2019 Nigeria General Elections as a reason why they did not perform well, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) is reporting.

The commission said the huge number of political parties that participated in the elections created an enormous logistics challenge which is the main reason they did not perform well.

The 76 political parties that contested for the Presidential election, posed a great logistics problem to INEC, the official said.

INEC National Commissioner in charge of Kwara, Kogi and Nasarawa States, Mr. Mohammed Haruna, disclosed this on Saturday in Ilorin while speaking to newsmen.

He made the statement in a conference organized in Kawara state by the commission to review the 2019 general elections.

The INEC official disclosed that there are over 799 cases before the court challenging the 2019 election outcome.

Haruna pointed out that Jigawa state has no petition regarding the election; however, Kwara has three while Imo ranks highest with 77 cases.

The INEC official disclosed that there were numerous pre-election cases across the nation arising from political parties’ primary elections.

“So you can see that with these kinds of problems we had, there is really a need to look at the number of political parties.

“We really need to do something about the 91 political parties, not just the quantity which generally speaking the public have begun to complain that 93 political parties are on the high side,” he added.

 “We underestimated the kind of logistical problem that implied the size of the ballot papers, result sheets and so on.

“By the time these materials started arriving, we realise that it was a huge logistical problem.

“We are lucky, we had the Nigerian Air Force to help with the movement of the materials, they have always been helping us,” Haruna said.

INEC has called for the review and amendment of the Electoral Act, a call it says will address the issue of too many political parties participating in elections and posing logistic challenges to INEC.

Haruna said the current legislation makes it very easy for anybody to register a political party.

Amending the law to make registration of political parties very rigid will help the proliferation of political parties and make INEC work easy, Haruna added.

INEC promised that the review at the conference will help improve in the conduct of governorship election that will be taking place in Kogi and Bayelsa states.

There are identified lapses, and we will close them at the Kogi and Bayelsa elections, Haruna assured.

 “We want to receive inputs from you that will help INEC to overcome challenges identified during the last general elections,” he said.

Participants at the workshop were INEC officials selected across, the 16 local government areas of Kwara state.

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