Nigeria: High Cost Of Elections Will Continue For Some Years More, Group Says

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Naijanews May 5, 2022 9:43 a.m.

Nigeria: High Cost Of Elections Will Continue For Some Years More, Group Says

‘’For contributions to political parties, Section 90 of the Electoral Act provides for how political parties are to deal with contributions from individuals and entities but does not specifically state whether such contributions are for the purpose of funding election expenses or for general fundraising purposes by parties.

‘’Ahead of political party primaries for the 2023 general elections, some aspirants, particularly those vying to be presidential candidates of their respective parties have claimed that their supporters will be making contributions for the purchase of their parties’ forms.

‘’Therefore, it may be inferred that expenses incurred by an aspirant before becoming a candidate are excluded from the calculation of election expenses referred to in the provision of Section 88.’’ ‘’Interestingly, in addition to the stipulated limits on contributions to candidates and political parties, Section 87 of the Electoral Act provides that INEC shall determine donation limits to political parties and candidates, adding that the Commission can also demand information on the amount and source of such donation.

‘’Section 89(1) defines election expenses as expenses incurred by a party from the date INEC issues notice for an election up to and including the day of the election.

‘’In the frenzy of elections and canvassing support for aspirants and candidates, it is also important to note that companies are prohibited from making donations or gifting property or funds to a political party or political association or for a political purpose according to section 43 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) 2020.

‘’The outrageous cost of elections has been a challenge and even more challenging are efforts to effectively monitor candidates’ election expenses, making it almost impossible to identify and prosecute offenders.

It may be deduced that the power vested on INEC by this provision is to exert general control on contributions to candidates during elections and contributions to political parties during elections and perhaps at all material time – both during elections and for general fundraising purposes..

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