Forum lauds Centre for strengthening democracy in Nigeria

Electoral commission officers count votes at Shagari Health Unit polling station in Yola, Adamawa State on February 23, 2019 after the polls were closed during the day of the General elections. - Nigeria began counting votes in presidential elections, even as many people had yet to even cast their ballot because of delays in the opening of polling units and problems with staffing and technology. Nigeria's Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) last week announced a one-week delay to the election, just hours before it was due to get under way. The presidential contest will see incumbent Muhammadu Buhari (APC) seek to win a second four-year term against former vice president Atiku Abubakar (PDP). (Photo by CRISTINA ALDEHUELA / AFP) (Photo credit should read CRISTINA ALDEHUELA/AFP/Getty Images)

By Awayi Kuje
Akwanga (Nasarawa State) Jan. 19, 2021 Forum of State Independent Electoral Commission (FOSIECON), has lauded the European Centre for Electoral Support (ECES) for enhancing democratic governance in Nigeria through the training of its members.
Alhaji Ibrahim Bako, Chairman, FOSIECON, gave the commendation on Tuesday on the sidelines of a five-day training on Leadership and Quality Management for Electoral Stakeholders (LEAD-Q), organised for State Independent Electoral Commission (SIECs) in Akwanga, Nasarawa State.
Bako said the training would strengthen democracy in the local level and the country at large.
“This training will enhance electoral management in Nigeria as it will improve the skills of election managers.
“The training will also improve on our skills to better the election process at the local level as the greater numbers of electorate are at the local government level.
“We will continue to appreciate ECES as the gesture will enhance capacities of the chairmen of SIECs towards strengthening electoral processes,” he said .
He gave the assurance that members would use the knowledge gained in order to conduct free and fair local government election in their respective states.
Also speaking, Hamza Fassi-Fihri, Project Coordinator, ECES, noted that local councils and local governments are indeed the first level at which citizens can experiment democracy, transparency and accountability.
“The level of credibility of local elections, the plurability of the representation, the effectiveness of the delivery of the public services are at the local level.
“This is why we believe that the more consolidated and strong the SIECs are, the more they contribute to increase the legitimacy, not only of the local democracy that they operate, but the legitimacy of the Nigerian democracy in general, “he said.

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