Politics

Former President Jonathan advocates for political positions to be secured through the ballot & not the court

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Former President Goodluck Jonathan has charged the Nigerian political system to ensure political positions are secured through the ballot and not through judicial systems.

The former President who received accolades for his peaceful handover to President Muhammadu Buhari un 2015 spoke in Abuja on Monday, during a studio visit to the digital pan-African news network, the TOS TV network.

He said, “Ballot papers should be the basis of selecting political officeholders. If it is the judiciary that should select them then we are not yet there.

“I am not saying the judiciary is not doing well but our laws should suppress the idea of our judiciary returning candidates. The ballots should decide who occupies the councillorship seat up to the presidency; that is democracy.”

The former President also condemned the culture of money politics and frowned at the use of gifts to sway votes in election.

He said, “The problem we have in Nigeria is the use of money to induce some voters. Compared to other African countries, we spend too much money here. Probably, we need to review our laws because I have observed a number of elections in African countries.

“For instance in Tanzania, a candidate does not need to print his name on matchbox or any items to woo voters. If you do that, they say that you are inducing the electorates. It is against their laws.

“But here if somebody is contesting elections, you buy bags of rice, wrappers, and all manner of items to induce the electorates. Ordinarily, our electoral laws are supposed to frown on such practices.

” If you do that, you are supposed to be disqualified from contesting in the election. So these are the things that make our elections expensive. I think if the young people are willing, things should begin to change.”

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