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Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden at a campaign event days before the US election/Photo: Kamala Harris/Facebook

Diaspora group on what Nigeria should learn from US elections

Nigeria could learn from the United States electoral process to build on democratic gains in the country, the African Diaspora Congress (ADC) said on Wednesday

Prof. Apollos Nwauwa, the Secretary-General and Public Relations Officer of the US-based organisation, made the comment in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).

According to Nwauwa, the outcome of the current US election would profoundly reshape not only the US itself, but the world.

Nwauwa said, “Nigeria can learn from the US electoral system that decentralises the process and farm them out to the States and Counties. There is no Independent National Electoral Commission controlling anything from a central location.

“Centralisation of command and control of national elections breeds inefficiency, manipulation and chaos. Nigeria should adopt this process and allow for early voting.”

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Nwauwa explained that the majority of the 100 million people who pre-voted in the US elections did so by mail and not necessarily electronically, saying other early voters actually voted at various polling stations set up by different states.

He said that the elections were not federally controlled, adding that each state had its electoral laws and guidelines, which cannot be altered by the Federal Government in the US, reiterating that such practice could be a lesson for other countries to learn.

In Nigeria as in most African countries, elections are managed by a central authority. In the case of Nigeria, the Independent National Election Commission, by law, “Organizes, undertakes and supervises all elections to the offices of the President and Vice-president, the Governor and Deputy Governor of a state, and to the membership of the Senate, the House of Representatives and the House of Assembly of each State of the Federation.”

Abeeb Alawiye

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