Expert calls for establishment of ICT infrastructure for e-voting in future elections

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Mr Tunde Ezichi, an expert in Information Communication Technology (ICT) has called for the establishment of  ICT infrastructure in the country to encourage e-voting in future elections.

Ezichi, Chief Executive Officer of Sigma-Beta-Alpha Ltd,  made the call on Tuesday in an interview with our source in Abuja.

He noted that a lot would be required in e-voting for a country like Nigeria, especially in  the area of infrastructure.

“The major challenge we have been having is getting to the rural area, voting electronically and to rely on that completely.

“The infrastructure which is the backbone that will facilitate the electronic voting is not really complete at the present time, so we need the infrastructure to be all over the country,

“Things like fibre optics should be made available all around the country as this is one of the things that will help facilitate electronic voting, ‘’ he said.

Ezichi also stressed the need for massive voter education on electronic voting as most of the people who go out to vote are uneducated.

He, however, said that most of the voters might have access to mobile phones, but there was still need to educate them on how e-voting could be done.

He said there was also need for the country to study what had happened in countries which had implemented electronic voting.

“We must thoroughly learn from the experiences and challenges they had before we can implement that in Nigeria, but it is not impossible because you can harness technology to make electronic voting possible.

Ezichi also urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to decentralise the production of election materials.

According to him, some of the voting materials produced abroad and then transported from there can be produced in Nigeria.

“Why producing some of these things abroad if they can be produced cheaper and effective here, is it that they can’t trust the printers here?, ” he said.