A former Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in Edo State, Mr Aniedi Ikoiwak, has called for a reduction of the number of political parties in the country.
Ikoiwak made the call in Eket, Akwa Ibom on Monday while reviewing the just concluded general elections across the country.
He said that there should be a legislative amendment of the Electoral Act pruning the number of political parties to two or five.
He said a situation where over 100 political parties were registered for an election when only two or three of such parties had massive followers was cumbersome and a waste of resources.
“The ballot papers in the just concluded general elections were littered with names of parties that could best be described as village associations with no national coverage as stipulated by law,” he said.
Ikoiwak said that some voters found it difficult to locate the logos of their preferred parties during the elections.
According to him, there was a remarkable improvement in the just concluded polls which he described as credible.
The former REC said that in few years from now, INEC would be the toast of Africa in election matters.
He added that the problems faced by INEC in the 2019 general elections were caused by desperate politicians.
“The way INEC is improving with each passing election, I foresee a situation where it will be difficult for a non performing governor or representative to have a second term.
“This is because the people’s votes will not only count but will be seen as having counted,” he said.
Ikoiwak further said that the country was politically and technologically ripe for electronic voting and called on politicians not to drag INEC and the Nigeria’s democratic journey backwards.
“Politicians in the country want to drag our democratic journey backwards by trying to set the rules at variance with the ethical standards of INEC, “Ikoiwak said.