The Economic Community of West Africa States has said the outcome of the 2023 general elections of Nigeria will have effects on the West Africa region and Africa continent as a whole.
ECOWAS stated this when a delegation of ECOWAS Pre-Election Fact Finding Mission to Nigeria led by former chairman, Electoral Commission of Ghana, Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, visited the Independent National Electoral Commission headquarters in Abuja on Monday.
Speaking on behalf of the delegation, Director, Political Affairs, ECOWAS Commission, Remi Ajibewa, said that they were in Nigeria for fact finding ahead of the country’s 2023 general elections in line with ECOWAS Supplementary Protocol 2021 to observe elections in Nigeria.
According to Ajibewa, Article 11, 12 and 13 of the protocol mandated the commission to deploy electoral fact-finding missions to every member state of ECOWAS that are about to conduct elections, especially presidential elections.
He said, “We all know the importance Nigeria holds, given the fact that, as they used to say, if Nigeria sneezes, the whole West Africa catches cold and we don’t pray that will be the result. So, we are here to listen to you, to see the area of challenges that we might also report.”
Responding, the INEC Chairman, Mahmood Yakubu, assured the ECOWAS delegation that Nigeria’s 2023 general elections will be driven by technology to enhance credible elections.
“Let me restate the commitment of INEC Nigeria to free, fair and credible elections driven by technology. The 2023 general elections in Nigeria will be driven by technology not only as a matter of legal requirement, but also as a matter of course, for us in the commission.
So, I want to assure the ECOWAS team that we are committed to delivering a credible election in the next four months and a few days, which will be Nigeria’s seventh successive election since the restoration of democracy in 1999.”