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Video: People in IDP camps must vote, says analyst

2015-02-06 09:56
Abubakar Shekau
An image made from the video in which Abubakar Shekau, the leader of Nigeria's Boko Haram claims his group is responsible for the abduction of the schoolgirls. (File: AP)

Lagos – With just eight days left for the country to go to the polls, the electoral commission may be faced with the challenge to figure out a way to enable people displaced by Boko Haram violence to vote, according to a political analyst.

In a video posted on YouTube, Professor Moses Ochonu of Vanderbit University said the electoral commission would have to come up with a way to get ballot papers and voter cards to the displaced people if the election is to remain credible.

"The challenge is for the electoral commission to figure out a way to get ballot papers to the people in the IDP (Internally Displaced People) camps… Otherwise the credibility of the vote would be in doubt and the outcomes would be questioned," said Ochunu.

Watch the video below.

He also urged the authorities to make sure that elections were conducted in areas in the northeast that were not under Boko Haram.

If this does not happen, he said, opposition would be on "sound" legal ground to dispute the result as the electoral act clearly states that polls "have to take place all over the country simultaneously for the election to be valid".

At least 13 000 people have been killed and more than a million forced from their homes since Boko Haram launched an insurgency in 2009.

The group has stepped up its attacks in recent weeks, in a move believed to be aimed at disrupting presidential and parliamentary elections.


Ochunu's remarks come after the Council of State decided to stick with14 February as the date for the country's general elections, quashing concerns that the poll may be postponed.

President Goodluck Jonathan of the ruling People's Democratic Party will face former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress.

According to a Reuters report, National Security Advisor Sambo Dasuki caused outrage when he called for a delay last month due to the slow distribution of voter ID cards necessary for accreditation at the polls.

Read more on: apc  |  goodluck jonathan  |  muhammadu buhari  |  politics  |  elections 2015

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