From Sola Ojo
The All-Rights Foundation (TAF) Africa has canvassed waivers for Persons With Disability (PWD) and grant them full inclusion in the entire electoral process in Kaduna State.
The frontline advocacy organization for the rights of PWD further called for the establishment of a realistic disability desk in the Kaduna State Independent Electoral Commission (KAD-SIECOM).
The Chief Executive Officer of TAF Africa, Dr. Jake Epelle who made these points during a courtesy visit to KAD-SIECOM noted that all hands must be on deck to ensure inclusiveness in all facets of Kaduna economy, hence the call for inclusive electoral processes in the State.
According to him, “TAF Africa with the sponsorship of the Canadian Embassy, will be training 25 staff and executives of KAD-SIECOM on PWDs inclusion, during which the entire workings and administrative processes of the Commission will be interrogated for their inclusivity status”.
Jake however commended KAD-SIECOM for its willingness to cooperate and work with TAF Africa towards ensuring the inclusion of PWDs in the electoral system in Kaduna State.
Responding, Chairman, KAD-SIECOM, Dr Saratu Dikko-Audu restated the need for the entire Country to adopt full-fledged electronic voting to ensure free, fair, transparent, and inclusive elections.
Referencing Kaduna local government elections where Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) were deployed, Saratu believed that the electronic voting system would reduce the chances of rigging and manipulations of the elections.
“Kaduna State Independent Electoral Commission (KAD-SIECOM) is the first to introduce electronic voting in Nigeria, because our former Governor, Nasir El-Rufa’i was personate about introducing electronic voting in the electoral space in Nigeria.
“The 2018 and 2021 local government elections were conducted with electronic voting machines and the citizens were excited about it, they said in a survey we conducted after the election that, they were confident in the system and want the machines to be used in future elections.
“This was because the process was transparent; you vote, you see what you voted and you see a receipt dropped in the ballot box and you can see a summary at the end of the election for every machine. That summary always tallies with the receipts that drop in the box so you can always check.
“So, we are pushing that agenda of electronic voting to the Federal Government to buy into it because we think it is the way to go if we want credible elections in Nigeria,” she said.