Former National Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Attahiru Jega, on Saturday stunned a high capacity audience in Lagos when he said that the 2015 general elections were not perfect.
According to Jega, the polls represented a remarkable departure from the country’s ignominious history of fraudulent elections.
Jega who spoke in Lagos at the 50th birthday anniversary lecture of the National Legal Adviser of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr. Muiz Banire, said there is need to check the excesses and recklessness of politicians for the country to attain its objective of perfecting its electoral process.
The former INEC chairman who spoke on the theme ‘Challenges and Prospects of Sustainable Credible Elections in Nigeria’, said it is necessary to institutionalize credible elections in the country and not to allow a reversal from the gains made in 2015.
Jega in the full glare of All Progressives Congress chieftains and top government officials including Chairman and publisher of LEADERSHIP Newspapers Mr. Sam Nda -Isaiah, governors of Ogun and Jigawa State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun and Badaru Abubakar respectively; Minister of Power, Housing and Works, Mr. Babatunde Fashola and his Solid Minerals counterpact, Dr. Kayode Fayemi; Chief Razaq Okoya, among others, said although, the challenges of carrying out electoral reforms seem profound and daunting, added that they are not insurmountable.
His words: “The 2015 elections were far from perfect, but they represented a remarkable departure from our ignominious history of fraudulent elections to the path of sustainable elections with credibility and integrity.
“Badly or poorly conducted elections had in the past damped our enthusiasm for transition to democracy and undermined our capacity to enjoy good democratic governance, with dire negative consequences on the livelihood and aspirations of a majority Nigerians.
“Identifying the attitudes of politicians as one of challenges militating against the nation’s electoral process, the unwholesome mind set of our politicians is one of the challenges of our electoral process. There are some decent politicians but they are very few.