Card Reader As A Tool For Election Transparency (2015 Elections)

Project and Seminar Material for Political Science

Card Reader As A Tool For Election Transparency (2015 Elections)

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction

1.1 Background of Study

The electoral process in Nigeria has gain a lot of transparency since the inception of the use of card reader as the tool for the credibility. The continuous occurrence of electoral malpractice in Nigeria political election has had a negative effect on its reputation and reliability.

According to (Akinboye, 2005) states that the effective management of the Nigeria electoral process has become significantly imperative political demand in order to ensure the level of transparency, sanctity and the overall credibility of election results in nation’s democratic settings.

(Udu, Nkwede et. Al2014) in his research stated that the INEC as an instrument of processing the democratic ideal structures is expected to be an independent body that promotes the ideals of continous transparency, accountability, impartiality and responsiveness. This maybe informed that popular perception that INEC is insulted from the partisan politics, and that INEC is fully empowered to carryout its avowed duties devoid of any kind of influence.

Evidence has it that INEC over the years has not been fully autonomous and non-partisan, it is also said that INEC does not appear to be sufficiently empowered to discharge its assigned duties and responsibility. Take a look at the 2015 general election in Nigeria despite some recorded irregularities evidenced in the non availability of the electoral materials, the rigging of the election results in some areas, especially the rural areas, the malfunctioning of their card reader machines and the friction caused by politicians and security personnels to subvert the process, the outcome of the 2015 general election in Nigeria was generally accepted to be transparent.

It was rumoured that by most of the foreign intelligent units and diplomatic sources since the year 2011 that Nigeria as a country will cease to exist after the 2015 election. According to the U. S ambassador to Nigeria, by name Mr John Campbell said that the country (Nigeria) will break up after the 2015 because he believed that the 2015 election will bring nothing but to put Nigeria in crisis.

But the result of the 2015 election came out otherwise even though many Nigeria believed that campbell prediction might take place

Frankly, Nigerians have desired a change of the Goodluck Jonathan’s PDP administration which has been generally accused of inefficiency, corruption, contempt of the people, insecurity etc. Security was brazenly compromised as government security agencies, including the military conducted their responsibilities with clear partisan inclinations that left nobody in doubt that state apparatuses as important as security and military institutions became tools of political vendetta, electoral manipulations and subversion of democratic norms

1.2 Statement of Problem

What really instigated the study card reader as a tool for election transparency is the continous growth of irregularities in Nigeria political election; evidence has it that the citizens of Nigeria has never been satisfied with the manner in which election is being conducted in Nigeria. the powerful opposition parties riggs election at will; thereby putting the nation in crisis. Over the years, a lot of lives has been lost during these periods of election rendering families homeless, children fatherless and shift in the federal allocation to most of the communities in Nigeria. the major problem here is the vote and re-vote processes in most of rural area because there is no tool for credibility.

1.3 Aims and Objectives of the Study

The main of objective of the research work is to examine the effect of card reader on election credibility and transparency.

The specific objectives of the research work are stated as follows:

  1. To examine the relationship between the use of card reader and the election transparency
  2. To examine the effect of card reader on the electoral process
  3. To investigate the factors affecting the delay or non- availability of electoral materials
  4. To discuss the role of INEC in the transparency and credibility of 2015 general election
  5. To proffer solution to the issues with the card in 2015 general election

1.4 Research Question

The study came up with the following research questions in s as to ascertain the overall objectives of the study. the research questions are stated as follows:

  1. Is there any relationship between the use of card reader and the election transparency?
  2. What is the effect of card reader on the electoral process?
  3. What are the factors affecting the delay or non- availability of electoral materials?
  4. What are the roles of INEC in the transparency and credibility of 2015 general election?

1.5 Statement of Research Hypothesis

Hypothesis 1
  • H0: there is no mean difference in gender responses of the respondents that the use of card reader is very effective in the 2015 general election
  • H1: there is mean difference in gender responses of the respondents that the use of card reader is very effective in the 2015 general election
Hypothesis 2
  • H0: there is no significant relationship between the use of card reader and election transparency
  • H1: there is significant relationship between the use of card reader and election transparency

1.6 Significance of Study

The study will be of immense benefit to the federal government of Nigeria, the INEC, the citizens of Nigeria, the world political bodies, the students and other researchers that wishes to carry out a similar research on the use of card reader as a tool for election transparency.

1.7 Scope of Study

The study card reader as a tool for election transparency will cover the 2015 general election in Nigeria.

1.8 Limitations of Study

Financial constraint- Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).

Time constraint- The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.

1.9 Definition of Terms

Card Reader:

Is a portable electronic voter authentication device, configured to only read the Permanent Voter Cards issued by the Independent National Electoral Commission. The card reader was designed specifically for the accreditation process, authentication of eligible voters before voting


The condition of being transparent


Is a formal decision-making process by which a population chooses an individual to hold public office. Elections have been the usual mechanism by which modern representative democracy has operated since the 17th century. Elections may fill offices in the legislature, sometimes in the executive and judiciary, and for regional and local government.

Electoral Materials:

This virtual library is a continuously updated collection of sample electoral materials from around the world, including laws and regulations, ballot papers, training manuals, election posters, essays, observation reports, technical assessments, administrative guidelines, electoral forms, codes of conduct, and much more

Chapter Five

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendations

5.1 Introduction

This chapter discusses the summary of the study, the conclusion as well as the recommendations which is followed by the suggestions for further studies.

5.2 Summary

This study examined card reader as a tool for election transparency (2015 election). This study was divided into five chapters in which the first chapter is the introduction which comprises the scope of the study, the research questions raised, the objectives as well as the hypotheses.

The second chapter is the literature review. In this chapter, theories relating to the study were discussed, the concept of elections and election transparency, selected issues in the 2015 general elections in Nigeria amongst many other necessary sub-headings were discussed.

In the third chapter, the method of data collection, research design, sampling technique as well as the method of data collection were indicated. However, the second to the last chapter presents the data analysis and interpretation. In this chapter, the data obtained were analyzed with descriptive and inferential statistical tools and were interpreted thereafter. The discussion of findings concluded this chapter.

5.3 Conclusion

After the analysis and interpretation of the data collected, the study concluded that; the use of card reader was very effective in the 2015 general elections, there is a significant relationship between the use of card readers and election transparency in the last general elections. The study however discovered some loopholes in the technology which had effect on the last election even though it was not significant such as the level of awareness among the electorates about the card reader was poor and also that INEC failed to conduct a proper test-run for the technology before it was being used for the general elections.

5.4 Recommendations

It was part of the objective of the study to recommend solutions to problems of the card reader in conducting elections hence, in achieving the objective, the following recommendations are proffered;

  1. Various mechanisms should be installed to ensure that the issued and challenges which confronted the use of the device before, during and after the elections do not re-occur in future elections
  2. INEC should ensure that its conduct and activities in future election is more transparent especially with the use of technology like the card reader to boost confidence in the electoral system.
  3. INEC should endeavour to manage information about the technology and changes so that stakeholders do not have unrealistic expectations.
  4. Lastly, efforts should be made to ensure cyber-security of the technology to hinder the activities of hackers who might want to disrupt or manipulate the electoral process in the next election(s).

5.5 Suggestion for Further Studies

The following areas are suggested for further studies;

  1. The effect of the independency on the electoral body on the confidence of the electoral system in Nigeria.
  2. The effect of the use of various technologies on the accuracy, transparency and effectiveness of the electoral system in Nigeria.
  3. The significant difference between pre-card reader era and post-card reader era of elections in Nigeria.

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