Atiku wants Electoral Act amended for electronic voting, collation of results
Written by Adeola Ibrahim on October 30, 2023
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2023 election, Atiku Abubakar, on Monday, called for the Electoral Act to be amended for electronic voting and collation of results in Nigeria.
Atiku made this call during a press conference in Abuja to address the October 26, 2023 verdict of the Supreme Court which affirmed that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu won the February 25 presidential election.
Justice John Okoro of the Supreme Court dismissed the appeals made by Atiku and the presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi challenging the victory of Tinubu.
Atiku in his address on Monday made a few proposals that he believes will help democracy in Nigeria beginning with the constitutional amendments to prevent electoral heists.
“We can urgently make constitutional amendments that will prevent any court or tribunal from hiding behind technicalities and legal sophistry to affirm electoral heists and undermine the will of the people,” he said.
“Our democracy must mean something; it must be substantive. Above all, it must be expressed through free, fair and transparent elections that respect the will of the people.
“Firstly, we must make electronic voting and collation of results mandatory. This is the 21st century and countries less advanced than Nigeria are doing so already. It is only bold initiatives that transform societies.
“Secondly, we must provide that all litigation arising from a disputed election must be concluded before the inauguration of a winner.
“This was the case in 1979. The current time frame between elections and inauguration of winners is inadequate to dispense with election litigations.”
Atiku said that what Nigeria has is akin to asking thieves to keep their loot and use the same to defend themselves while the case of their robbery is being decided.
He said he believes that this will only encourages mandate banditry rather than discourages it.
“Thirdly, in order to ensure popular mandate and real representation, we must move to require a candidate for President to earn 50% +1 of the valid votes cast, failing which a run-off between the top two candidates will be held,” he said.