Administration of electoral system in Nigeria (1999-2011)

Oyewale, Rasaq Omoniyi (2014)

xiii,213p

Thesis

The study examined the features of the electoral system during the four general elections in Nigeria since 1999 to 2011; and evaluated the institutional infrastructures put in place for the administration of electoral systems. It also assessed the administration of electoral systems by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and examined the effects of changing electoral system as well as the challenges to the administration of the electoral system. These were with a view to providing information on the techniques and processes employed in the administration of electoral systems in Nigeria. The study utilized primary and secondary sources of data collection. The primary data were collected using questionnaire administration and conduct of indepth interviews. Two hundred and twenty nine copies of questionnaire were administered on respondents using purposive sampling technique, out of which a total of 171 (representing 75%) were completed and retrieved. The study covered the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, the location of INEC headquarters; and three out of the six geo-political zones in Nigeria, namely, South West; South East and North West. Out of the states selected from the target zones, three local government areas (LGAs) were purposively selected, including their state capitals. The distribution of the questionnaire was as follows: Directors at INEC headquarters (10); Civil Servants (45), fifteen per study location; Tenured Political Office holders (30), ten per State; Electoral officers at the Local Government Areas (36), four in each of the three selected LGAs in the three selected States; Opinion leaders (36), four in each of the selected LGAs in the three States; Religious Leaders (36), four in each of the three selected LGAs in the three States; notable politicians (36), four in each of the three selected LGAs in the three States. Furthermore, indepth interviews were conducted with key senior officials at the National Electoral Commission (INEC) Abuja (3); Federal Electoral Officers (3) and State Resident Electoral Commissioners/Representatives in the target States (3). The senior INEC officials chosen were directly involved in implementing and supervising elections across the country during each electoral cycle. Secondary data were derived from official publications by INEC, Federal Government gazettes as well as books, journal articles, unpublished theses and the Internet. Data collected were analysed using descriptive statistics such as percentages and inferential statistics such as ANOVA and chi-square. The results showed that the main feature of the electoral system during the four general elections in Nigeria since 1999 was the Simple Majority System. The institutional infrastructures put in place for the administration of elections since 1999 included Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) (60%), Direct Data Capturing Machines (68%), Ballot Boxes (70%), Voters’ Cards (76%), and Polling booths (80%). The results also showed the administration of the electoral systems by the electoral body during each of the four elections were significantly the same (F=2.24; p<0.05). Furthermore the results showed an adverse effect on the credibility of elections t(6) = + 1.9439; p<0.05). Finally, the results identified key challenges in the administration of the electoral system between 1999 and 2011 to include inadequate funding (56%), epileptic power supply (79%), inadequate trained staff (86%) and difficult terrain in transporting electoral materials (92%). The study concluded that whereas the 2011 general elections were relatively adjudged fair by local and international observers, the administration of electoral system in Nigeria during the study period was characterised by misappropriation of funds, electoral fraud, inadequate provision of security for officials, as well as inadequate training of electoral officers, leading to violence and petitions in the law courts. Supervisor: Dr. (Mrs) J.T. Makinde Number of Pages: 203

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