Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Friday, January 23, 2015

Voting in a war zone?

People in Nigeria have to "go home" to vote. The reporter doesn't explain exactly what that means, but for residents of refugee camps it might mean losing the chance to vote. Will this affect the results?

Nigerians made homeless by Boko Haram seen losing vote too
Nigerians fleeing a wave of killings by the Islamist group Boko Haram have already lost loved ones, livelihoods and most of their possessions. Now they seem likely to lose their vote.

A closely fought presidential election is to be held in a month’s time and the law states people must go home if they want to participate, posing a risk to the credibility of the poll in Africa’s biggest economy.

The electoral commission says it is rushing to distribute voter ID cards to the 1.5 million people who have been displaced…

Minawao camp in Cameroon
But for many voters the idea of going back to their home constituencies, as they legally must in order to cast their ballots, is too harrowing to contemplate.

President Goodluck Jonathan faces ex-military ruler Muhammadu Buhari in the Feb. 14 election, and there are grave doubts over whether voting can happen in swathes of the northeast overrun by rebels. As they are mostly opposition strongholds, Buhari stands to lose out the most…

The independent electoral commission (INEC) hopes it can find a away around the law… Giving out ID cards in refugee camps was itself a departure from the normal rules.

Nearly half of all registered voters nationwide have yet to receive new voter identification cards, the commission said on Tuesday, raising questions about preparations for the vote with just a month to go…

To illustrate the size of the problem, in Adamawa state, five Boko Haram-controlled local authorities account for 356,680 voters…

IDPs Will Not Be Disenfranchised in February Elections Says INEC
THE Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) said it was determined to ensure that Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) were not disenfranchised in the February elections...

To ensure that the IDPs exercise their franchise in the elections, INEC said it had scheduled a "crucial meeting" with stakeholders...

Stakeholders expected at the meeting... are representatives of the governments of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe as well as members and speakers of their Houses of Assembly.

Others, it said, included religious leaders, representatives of security agencies comprising, and civil society organizations...

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