BY GRACE ONUOHA
The 2023 general elections will be difficult to manipulate by desperate politicians and public office seekers.
Aside vote buying and selling which has continued to remain an ugly feature of recent elections in the country as witnessed in Osun and Ekiti States governorship election, the 2022 Electoral Act( amended) introduced key modifications which will make elections in the country considerably free, fair and credible.
It is a known fact that elections in the past in the country, particularly the 2007, 2011 and 2015 general elections, fell below expectations as the processes were manipulated and massively rigged, a development which led to electing wrong persons or candidates.
However, based on the amended new Electoral Act, INEC has introduced measures, which analysts say, would reduce manipulation of elections. This is expected to ensure that the right candidates or rather the choice of voters eventually get elected.
Based on the foregoing, in the forthcoming 2023 elections, there will be no manual accreditation of voters and no provision of incident forms. Also, all accreditation will be electronic. The use of facial recognition and finger printing (BIVAS), will also be used in the 2023 election.
The use of BIVAS in Osun and Ekiti State governorship elections reduced rigging to the barest minimum.
BIVAS eliminates dual voting. In other words, once a voter’s face and finger print is captured, the voter cannot vote more than twice.
Also, all results are to be uploaded to INEC website or server at each polling unit before collation starts and results taking to any collation center. This eliminates stuffing of ballot boxes or thump printing as was the case in the past.
Also, if the number of votes is more than the number of those accredited, elections in the polling unit is cancelled.
Though no elections are perfect, the new measures introduced by INEC to ensure a credible election in 2023, places power on the voter to choose or elect only credible and competent candidates.