The Electoral Institute of South Africa (EISA) has deployed 30 observers across Nigeria prior the Saturday Presidential and National Assembly elections.
Rupia Banda, leader of EISA observation team and former President of Zambia made this known Thursday during a visit to the Independent National Electoral Commission in Abuja.
Banda emphasized that Nigeria is too important to the the progress, unity and peace of the African continent and the entire world, hence the need to observe how elections are conducted in country and to make appropriate recommendations that would further deepened her democratic process.
He observed that the Nigerian elections are complicated as evident in the number of Presidential Candidates which are more than members of the Zambia Parliament and wished the country well.
“The importance of Nigeria to Africa and indeed to the world can not be overstated so we are very honoured to be here in order to observe and to see how the elections will take place.
“A team of about 30 people will be deployed to various parts of this great nation. We look forward to observe this successful and peaceful election as it takes place this weekend.
“We know how complex the size of the country and the size of the population of Nigeria is. Therefore we wish Nigerian people under your leadership, Mr. Chairman very successful elections.
“We wish you well on what you have put in with the election population. The many Presidential Candidates is unbelievable. In our country if I tell the people of Zambia how many members on the list of the Presidential election is almost the number of the whole Parliament in our country so we know how complicated it is”, Banda noted.
Mahmood Yakubu, INEC Chairman while welcoming the EISA to Nigeria said the Commission looks forward to the recommendations of their observations and implement those that would enhance the electoral process in Nigeria.
Yakubu who commended EISA for supporting democracy and the democratization process not only in Nigeria but other African countries assured the observers deployed to different parts of Nigeria that adequate security arrangements have been put in place to guarantee their safety before, during and after the elections.
“It is once again our pleasure in Nigeria as we conduct election this weekend to welcome yet another team for peer review, this time around from the Continent led by such an eminent person as His Excellency Rupia Banda.
“We are always encouraged when people of your standing in the Continent come and observe what we do in Nigeria. We look forward to your important recommendations while assuring you that at the end of the day we will give consideration to your reports and the recommendations in strengthening our processes and procedures.
“EISA has been supporting democracy and the democratization process not only in Nigeria but elsewhere as well. It has led successful missions to Sierra Leone and Liberia in July 2017 ahead of their elections and EISA provided resource persons”, he stated.