Ondo governorship election: EU supports the training INEC staff on effective electoral administration


As part of its continued commitment to strengthening Nigeria’s democratic governance, the European Union (EU) has supported the training of INEC staff in Ondo state.

The two-day capacity building workshop, which was held in Akure, Ondo state, and organised by a cohort member under the European Union Support to Democratic Governance in Nigeria Programme (EU-SDGN), is in preparation for the upcoming governorship election in the state slated for November 16, 2024.

It aimed to improve the proficiency of INEC staff to deliver a free, fair, credible, and transparent election in the state.

The training focused on six (6) priority areas, including electoral administration; strategic planning and operations; internal communication and external engagement with stakeholders; and electoral training.

Others are legal and policy framework for elections; election technology; and engagement with State Independent Electoral Commissions (SIECs).

In his remarks during the workshop, the Development Alternatives Incorporated (DAI)/EU-SDGN Representative, Denis Mutabazi, said, “EU-SDGN supports INEC in its endeavours to improve the quality of electoral administration, with a view to fostering a functioning, pluralistic, inclusive, participatory, and representative democracy in Nigeria.

“The workshop is a crucial demonstration of INEC’s strong commitment to effective delivery of elections and the integrity of electoral outcome.

“The EU-SDGN appreciates that the integrity of elections is determined by the professional dexterity of the electoral staff, because well trained staff are most likely to deliver their tasks up timely with confidence.

“It is worth noting that the idea of this workshop is to inculcate in INEC staff, knowledge of electoral operations and procedures, electoral administration, and election management, which comprises all key aspects of the conduct of the election up till the return of a winner.”

He explained that the training will not only help INEC staff effectively manage elections, but will help build trust and credibility in electoral processes and outcomes.

Mutabazi added, “The EU-SDGN is confident that this capacity building workshop for INEC staff will make a significant contribution to effective planning, delivery, and conclusion of the forthcoming governorship election in Ondo state.

“It is on the basis of this confidence that the EU-SDGN has partnered with INEC to organise this two-day capacity building workshop on electoral administration.”

In his goodwill message, Executive Director, Centre for Media and Society (CEMESO), Dr. Akin Akingbulu, said, “Human resource development is very important as the Election Management Body prepares for another exercise. Indeed, the centrality of capacity upgrade is underscored by the ever-growing demand by citizens for stronger, positive outcomes in election administration.

“Our reading is that the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) and her team want to deliver a credible election that stakeholders and citizens can be proud of. We imagine that the team has collated lessons learnt in previous exercises, assessed the resource situation in the house, listened to stakeholders’ observations to inform the packaging of this activity at this time.

“I wish to seize this opportunity to call on other election stakeholder groups to emulate what INEC is doing by also strengthening their personnel in readiness for the November 2024 governorship polls in Ondo state.

“The task of delivering a credible election is a multi-stakeholder task. The political parties, security agencies, and others should re-equip and re-orientate their personnel so that they will all deliver appropriate performances in the election.”