Hello. Does anybody know where the election date has gone?

After taking a short break away from the blog, to pack up and move to another country, I was excited at the prospect of catching up on Nigerian politics – in particular the 2011 elections which were rumoured to take place early this year. So a quick search on Google comes up with nothing – a further search produces the same result. However, I stumble across a story in the Vanguard that suggests that the election may now take place in April. April?! If somebody could please fill me in on why the date has been pushed so far back , it would be much appreciated.

During my search on the upcoming elections, I also stumbled across a story about suspected vote rigging during the registration of eligible voters across the country. Hodewu Avoseh, a member of the Lagos State House of Assembly, said that he had received information about stolen Direct Data Capture (DDC) machines. Avoseh said: “Six machines have already been hijacked in various centres around Aguda, Surulere.”

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) employed the services of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) to oversee election registration and voting. This news will disappoint many Nigerians who had hoped for some improvement in the voting process this time around.

Late last year, Chairman of the INEC, Prof. Attahiru Jegu, had warned Nigeria to not expect a perfect election, but had done his best to reassure the country that the INEC “will bring a remarkable and substantive improvement that will make Nigerians accept the credibility of the elections.” Read the full story here.

Who is to blame for this debacle? What suggestions do you have to stamp out voting corruption  from the grassroots?

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