By Aluta News
Dec. 17, 2021
Some prominent Nigerians, including Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, have called on Nigerians to see security of electoral processes as a priority for enhanced democracy and good governance.
They gave their submissions during the 4th Sen. Abiola Ajimobi Roundtable and Posthumous birthday held on Thursday at the University of Ibadan (UI).
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event was organised by Sen. Abiola Ajimobi Foundation (SAAF), in collaboration with the Institute for Peace and Strategic Studies, UI.
NAN reports that SAAF had also donated a resource centre to the institute in memory of Ajimobi and which was inaugurated by the vice president.
Osinbajo said that protecting election is a great way of protecting democracy and enhancing good governance.
“Man has not yet developed any better system than the government of the people for the people and by the people. All these when encapsulated in one word is democracy.
“Thus, protecting our election is to protect our democracy. If we must pray like Lincoln did at Gettysburg that this democracy does not perish off the face of the earth,” he said.
The Vice president commended SAAF for dedicating the building in late Ajimobi’s honour, saying the late former governor was a bridge builder and man of peace.
“This building is also important, like the roundtable held in the honour of our friend and father.
“He was an excellent person, attaining early success in the oil and gas industry before venturing into politics.
“He is sorely missed for his ability to find the humorous in all he did. He loved his wife and children so dearly,” he said.
Prof. Attahiru Jega, a former Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), said that election security is a requirement for the quality of governance.
Jega, who was the lead presenter, said that free and fair elections are necessary to give rise to good governance.
He said that there must be adequate, professional, non-partisan security in the nation’s electoral process.
“Elections must be free of hooliganism, forgery and other malpractices. Our democracy is broadly participatory.
“One major factor that still remains in contention is the mindset of the leaders of some security agencies,” he said.
The former INEC boss urged them to see the safety of election as a matter of national security.
“Our political leaders also have a mindset of militarization – they want to dominate the people. This cannot be overlooked.
“We must look at security from all its different angles. It is not just about matching guns around on election day,” he said.
Jega said that Nigeria ranked lowly on the quality of democracy and elections, saying such must be sincerely turned around.
NAN reports that the event was attended by Alhaji Rauf Olaniyan, the Oyo State Deputy Governor, and his Osun State Counterpart, Mr Benedict Alabi.