Reforms & Policies


Written by Elvis Boniface

Election, particularly its competitive variant, represents an essential ingredient in the democratic process especially within the liberal democratic paradigm. It cannot be overemphasized that free, fair, credible and well organized elections constitute a critical desideratum for the sustenance and consolidation of democracy in any society.

Perhaps, with the exception of the June 12, 1993 presidential election, the history of competitive elections has been anything but outstanding. There have been electoral narratives of elite factionalism, ideologically bereft political parties, inept, incompetent, poorly equipped and meddlesome electoral umpire, rigging and snatching of ballot boxes, electoral violence as well as judicial corruption in terms of post-election adjudication.

Specifically, these electoral vices were so pronounced during the 2007 elections that the beneficiary of the electoral heist set up the Justice Mohammadu Uwais Electoral Reform Commission to examine the various aspects of Nigeria’s electoral process and suggest recommendations for improvement. It is regrettable that the major recommendations of the Commission were not implemented either preparatory to or during the conduct of the 2011 elections. However, it is incontrovertible that the conduct of the 2011 elections recorded some improvements from the previously organized elections. Even the International community assessed the 2011 elections as “successful” with “substantial improvements” over the 2007 elections which were fraught with huge irregularities and violence. In spite of that, a lot still needs to be desired from the umpire and other stakeholders in the organization and conduct of free, fair and credible elections in Nigeria.

It is in realization of the foregoing that the Department of Sociology, University of Lagos in collaboration with the Independent National Electoral Commission will hold its Distinguished Annual Lecture and Conference as follows:

DATE: Thursday, August 21 to Saturday, August 23, 2014

TIME: 9 a.m. daily

VENUE: Main Auditorium/Department of Creative Arts Complex, UNILAG, Akoka

THEME: Stakeholders and the Electoral Process in Nigeria: Review of 2011 Elections; Projections for 2015 and Beyond

GUEST LECTURER: Professor Attahiru Jega, Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission.

The lecture/conference will provide a platform for the review of the roles of all stakeholders in the 2011 elections, with a view to making projections for the 2015 and subsequent elections in Nigeria The Department of Sociology therefore invites abstracts from suitably qualified individuals in the following thematic areas:

1. INEC and other election management bodies

I. Public perception and expectations of INEC

II. Institutional /legal frameworks for credible elections in Nigeria

III. Funding and independence of INEC

IV. Assessment of INEC’s roles in past electoral processes

V. Voter registration and continuous voter education (CVE)

VI. Ad-hoc staff: control and credibility of elections

VII. Use of ICT in the electoral process: issues and prospects

VIII. Conflict management, litigations and ADR in the electoral process

2. Political parties and the party system

i. Political parties, party structures and internal democracy

ii. Funding of political parties in Nigeria

iii. Political parties, ideologies and manifestoes

iv. Godfatherism, money and party politics in Nigeria

v. Inter and intra party relations; party merger and alliances

vi. Ruling parties/ opposition parties and credible elections

3. Government agencies

i. Electoral process and the apparatuses of the state

ii. Roles and functions of government agencies in elections

iii. The roles of Federal/State/Local Governments in the conduct of elections

iv. The power of incumbency and credible elections

v. Budgetary allocations and credible elections

4. Security and the electoral process

i. Understanding the nexus between elections and national security

ii. Militarization of the electoral process in Nigeria

iii. The Nigeria Police Force and other security agencies in the electoral process in Nigeria

iv. Security challenges and 2015 elections in Nigeria

v. Security and safety of election material and electoral personnel

5. Electorate

i. Voter education and grass root mobilization of the electorate

ii. Government performance and public confidence in the electoral process

iii. Political culture and electoral participation

iv. The Nigerian electorate and electoral malpractices

v. Voter participation/ apathy and credible elections in Nigeria

vi. Corruption and the electoral process in Nigeria

vii. Gender, politics and the electoral process

6. International Partners and Observers

i. Roles of international partners in the electoral process

ii. Roles of observers in elections

iii. Developing rules of engagement for observers.

iv. Developing partnership between Nigerian and foreign civil society organizations for elections

7. Media

i. The roles of the media as the 4th estate of the realm in the electoral process

ii. Ethical issues in election coverage and reportage

iii. Opinion polls and election manipulation

iv. Social media, citizenship engagement and the electoral process in Nigeria

v. FOI Act and safety of media practitioners in the electoral process

8. Judiciary

i. Independence and funding of the Judiciary

ii. The role of the judiciary in the electoral process

iii. Petitions, litigations and the electoral process in Nigeria

iv. Election tribunals and electoral mandates

9. Civil Society Organizations (CSOs)

i. The role of CSOs in the electoral process

ii. CSOs and election monitoring

iii. CSOs and monitoring of democratic institutions

iv. Advocacy, accountability and good governance

v. Voter education, public enlightenment and grass root mobilization

vi. Partnership, facilitation/ collaboration with other stakeholders

10. Other stakeholders

i. The electoral process and the academia

ii. Youths, politics and the electoral process

iii. Women and the electoral process

iv. Informal social groups and elections e.g. NURTW, market men & women associations, ethnic militias, etc.

v. Pressure groups and the electoral process


Scholars, interested individuals and groups, politicians, bureaucrats, media practitioners, activists, electoral observers, and other stakeholders are invited to submit abstract of not more than 250 words indicating title of paper, author(s) name, institutional affiliation or relevant address where applicable, telephone numbers and email address. Abstract should be sent in electronic format not later than July 18, 2014 (Please indicate the thematic area under which you want your paper to be categorized) to:

  1.  Dr. ‘FunmiBammeke+2348052613685:
  2.  Dr. Bola Amaike +2348053064761:
  3. Dr. Dele Ashiru +2348026274712:

Guidelines for the preparation of papers will be communicated to authors of short-listed abstracts and full papers of accepted abstracts should be submitted on or before August 18, 2014.

Yours’ truly will be there to give the event live coverage.

About the author

Elvis Boniface

Ordained Evangelist of the Education Ministry. Learning is my lifestyle, credo and religion. On a mission to disrupt and redirect Africa's Education conversation using Technology and Media. We can do it. Open to discuss any Education initiative and idea. #peace

Speedy reach: +2348185787349 &

Leave a Comment