Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) commissioner representing Niger, Kogi and Kwara State in North Central Nigeria, Professor Mohammed Sani Adam has advanced reasons why the commission has limitations in stopping vote buying.
The commissioner who was in Minna, Niger State capital to monitor the ongoing voter registration in the state however decried the development as a clog in the wheel of credible election in the country.
Professor Adam said vote buying is a national issue and a sociological problem, but there was limit to what the commission as a body can do in terms of curtailing it.
He argued that ” There are anti-corruption agencies like the ICPC and the EFCC, and other security apparatus basically saddled with the responsibility of monitoring criminal activities, ours is to conduct elections not monitor criminals.
“INEC has nothing to do as far as vote buying is concerned, what INEC can only do is to ensure that the polls are free, fair and all encompassing, and also to ensure that polling unit security, materials and the process of the polling unit are fully observed according to electoral act.”
The commissioner however urged religious and traditional leaders across the country to advise their subjects to desist from selling their votes during elections, even as he admonished politicians in the country to form the habit of accepting defeat during elections.
“The problem with most politicians in the country is they don’t always look at political offices as service to the father land, but as a means of selfish aggrandizement or acquiring wealth as the only business of the day, and that necessitated winning elections by all means,” he said.