NILDS Calls For Standardized Election Observation Guidelines

  • Wednesday July 18, 2018 07:42 AM
  • NILS Press Corps
Critical stakeholders commit to new guidelines on domestic election observation as a 2-Day Summit, organized by the National Institute for Democratic Studies, NILDS begins in Abuja.

The consultative meeting has brought together, INEC, Domestic observer groups and international development partners. The objective is to develop a harmonized and standardized framework for domestic election observation that would promote genuine electoral process and credible elections; engender positive citizen perception that inspire public confidence, reinforce electoral integrity and guarantee legitimacy of governments as an outcome of elections.

The Senate President, Sen. (Dr) Bukola Saraki, while declaring the summit open, in an address by his Chief of Staff, Baba Ahmed, noted that “As 2019 general elections draw nearer, it is my hope that we will not only replicate the success story of 2015, but surpass our previous achievements. Thus we should consider 2015 as a minimum standard. The development of a harmonized and standardized framework for domestic election observation will go a long way in supporting the organization of free and competitive elections which is not only a political priority but a moral imperative”, he added.

In his keynote address, Prof Attahiru Jega has called for structured engagement with INEC by Domestic election observer groups and a partnership with stakeholders, especially, the CSO’s, to guarantee continuous improvement in the quality of elections and build confidence in the integrity of the electoral process”.

Earlier, the Director General NILDS, Prof. Ladi Hamalai, represented by the Director Democratic Studies, Prof. Femi Ajayi, noted that “Citizens’ observation of the electoral process has become an integral part of Nigeria’s democratic process since the country’s return to democracy. Oversight of the electoral process is an important means to protect electoral integrity and our experience has demonstrated the need for greater citizens’ engagement in elections observation”.

Meanwhile, the Head of European Union Delegation to Nigeria, represented by, Paulin Tawell has reaffirmed EU’s commitment to the growth of democracy in Nigeria with 26.5 million Euros.
The Chairman House of Representatives Committee on INEC, represented by Hon. Zakari Anglo observed that the summit, coming at a very critical time of Nigeria’s democratic growth, as we approach the 2019 general elections will bring about solutions in ways that ally with global best practices.

The summit has in attendance, a considerable number of political parties and other stakeholders.
The 2-Day Summit on Elections Observation is an initiative of NILDS, in partnership with INEC and the European Union.