Voter apathy blamed on political parties

Mike Igini, resident electoral commissioner of Akwa Ibom state, says the failure of the political class to “rally people on issues” is the reason for voter apathy.
Speaking when he featured on Sunrise Daily, a Channels Television programme, on Tuesday, Igini said every election year has witnessed a decline in voter turnout.
He said before candidates are presented to the people, political parties must screen hopefuls thoroughly.
Igini also said political parties must prioritise debates before primaries, so cogent issues are “treated and interrogated”.
“The whole essence of a political party is that you represent a district vision, and a common goal. The political party becomes a platform for the people to interpret that common goal,” he said.
“Who becomes a candidate in an election are choices made by people who already have influence and power. That in the final analysis, the choice the entire populace is called to make are choices already made by the political parties.
“Therefore, at this level, where they are aspirant, the message now is that speak before you select or elect, before you take someone as your flagbearer.
“Ask those questions. That’s what we have been lacking. We have not been interrogating aspirants. Party members should pin them down.
“At the moment, political class are not rallying the people on issues that matter to them, and that is why you see voter engagement going down.”

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