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Political Parties Seek Scrapping Of SIECs

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Four political parties have supported the call for the scrapping of the States Independent Electoral Commissions (SEICs) because they are instruments of political manipulations.

Speaking in an interview with newsmen in Abuja, Mr Chambers Okorie, a United Progressive Party (UPP) Chieftain, said SEICs had outlived their usefulness.

He said it was so unfortunate that SEICs had not lived up to their responsibilities because they had contributed to apathy, and political instability at the grassroot levels.

“SEICs are not interested in conducting credible elections, or inspire trust and confidence through impartiality, transparency, and civility,” Okorie said.

According to him, SIECs do not respect the wishes of oppositions in their various states.

Okorie said it was  unfortunate that SEICs had allowed the state governments to use them as agents of political settlements at the detriment of democracy at the grassroots.

“SEICs have contributed to political corruption in Nigeria, they have never conducted free and fair elections,’’ he said.

Okorie said the activities of SEICs should be transferred to Independent National Electoral Commission INEC because the “Jega led INEC team has brought credibility to bear in the conduct of elections in the country’’.

The Chairman of Labour Party in the FCT, Mr Adejobi Peter, said he was in support of political parties positions in Nigeria calling for the scrapping of SIECs.

He said that labour party was in total support of such decision because SEICs was not democratic and their activities were unhealthy for the development of democracy.

Peter said it was so unfortunate that SEICs had rendered local government elections uncompetitive in the country.  He said SIECs had denied the electorate their rights to good governance because their votes did not count.

Peter said this system had made it difficult for the local Governments to deliver the dividends of democracy to the people at the grassroots level. The Deputy Chairman of APGA in the FCT, Chief Anyegnunamu Okoye, said politicians in the FCT were lucky not to have anything to do with the SEICs.

According to him, councils elections in the FCT are under the supervision of INEC, the councils enjoy free and fair elections.

Okoye said SEICs had not played any better or more positive role in elections at the local level, they had worked towards democratic reversal rather than democratic consolidation.

Okoye said SEICs control should be withdrawn from the state governments and INEC empowered to be incharge.

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Politics

Buhari Seeks Senate’s Approval For Additional External Loans

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President Muhammadu Buhari has sought approval of Senate for additional external loan under the 2018 to 2021 Federal Government external borrowing plan.
Buhari’s request was contained in a letter addressed to President of Senate, Ahmad Lawan and read at plenary, yesterday.
Buhari in the letter said the loan which would be sourced from the multilateral organisations would be used to finance critical projects of the Federal and States governments.
“Addendum to the Request for Senate concurrent approval of Multilateral Fund Projects under the 2018 to 2021 Federal Government external borrowing plan.
“I write on the above subject to submit attached addendum to the proposed 2018 to 2021 Federal Government external borrowing rolling plan for the consideration and concurrent approval of the Senate.
“Senate may wish to recall that I had earlier transmitted a request from the proposed 2018 to 2020 Federal Government external borrowing plan for the concurrent approval of Senate in May 2021.
“However, in view of other emerging needs and to ensure that all critical projects are covered, the Federal Executive Council as at June 2021 incorporated.
“I hereby forward an addendum to the proposed external borrowing plan.
“The projects listed in the addendum to the 2018 to 2021 Federal Government external borrowing plan are to be financed through sovereign loans from the World Bank, French Development Agency, China Exim Bank, International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD),Credit Swiss Group, and Standard Chartered, in the credit total sum of 4.5 billion dollars,710 million euros and grant component of 125 million dollars.
“The Senate is kindly invited to know that the projects and programmes in the borrowing plan were selected based on positive technical and economic evaluations and the contributions that will make the socio- economic development of the country including, employment generation and poverty reduction and protection of the most vulnerable in the society.
“All the said projects in the addendum, form part of the 2018-2021 external borrowing plan and covered all the Federal and state governments projects and are geared toward realisation of Nigeria’s sustainability plan.”
Buhari said the sustainability plans cuts across key sectors, such as infrastructure, health, agriculture and food, security energy, education and human capital development.
He urged the senate to give consideration and approval to the request, given the timing and benefits due to be accrued to the implementation of the projects across the country.

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Group Tasks INEC On Sensitisation

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A Non-Governmental Organisation, YIAGA Africa, has tasked the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) on the need to intensify public sensitisation for the ongoing voters registration exercise.
YIAGA Africa, which specialises in monitoring elections and citizens participation in the electoral process across the continent also scored INEC high in voters’ registration exercise. 
State Coordinating Officer of YIAGA, Obinna Ebogidi, told newsmen that though the exercise had improved, there was need for more enlightenment, as public participation was still low.
“We as  an organisation are interested in the build up to the election, because what is going on now will afford Nigerians to have their PVCs and vote in the elections”, he declared.
To further drive the process, he revealed that the body had sent its monitors across the 23 local government areas of the state with the goal of boosting public participation and feedback.
Ebogidi stated that though the exercise suffered hitches earlier,  INEC had improved on its services, as there was electronic network transmission hitches when the network began.
Besides improving on public education, he also tasked INEC to improve on staff’s training on electronic voters’ registration so that the process would be more efficient.

By: Kevin Nengia

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 INEC Discloses Updates On CVR

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says 931,768 Nigerians have completed their physical registration in its ongoing nationwide Continuous Voter Registration (CVR).
The electoral empire also disclosed that pre-registration had hit 2,953,094 as at 7 a.m of September 13.
The commission disclosed this in the Week 11 update on the pre-registration, which commenced on June 28, released on Monday in Abuja.
INEC further revealed that it had received 4,225,749 applications from people requesting for voter transfer, replacement of Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) and update of voter information record, among other requests.
The Tide  reports that distribution of applications based on gender, shows that 2,308,338 are from males, 1,917,411 from females, while 50,395 of the applicants are from people with disabilities.
The update on the 2,953,094 Nigerians, who had done their online pre-registration, also shows that Osun State has the highest number with 402,619, followed by Edo State with 223,009 and Bayelsa State with 216,280.
The states with the lowest number of re-registration in the CVR are Borno with 11,612, followed by Yobe 13, 176 and Abia 14,248.
The Tide also reports that the week seven update on the 931,768 registrants who have completed their online and physical registration shows that Anambra records 138,795 as the state with the highest number, followed by Osun with 52,823.
However, Imo has the lowest with 6,428, followed by FCT 9,130 and Abia with 9,140 in the physical registration that started on July 26.

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