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This project seeks to understand the role of the electoral commission in promoting democratic development in Nigeria (a case study of the Imo State Independent Electoral Commission in Owerri).This study is my tiny contribution to current knowledge about the role of the Electoral Commission in promoting democratic development in Nigeria.

The project is broken into five chapters to ensure successful research work. The first chapter includes an introduction, a problem statement, the objectives of the study,

the significance of the investigation, the study’s limitations, and a definition of words. Chapter two provides a survey of related literature and references the theoretical framework/hypothesis.

Chapter three includes the research design and methodology, the area of study, the population, the source of data, and the data used in writing this project. The data was generated through questionnaires,

with a total of one hundred and twenty questionnaires administered, twelve (12) of which were incorrectly filled and twenty-eight (80) returned.

Chapter four contains data presentation and analysis, and the statistical approach employed is Chi-square. The research findings revealed that replies from 4:1 were of the opinion that an electoral process is required for the survival of democracy in Nigeria.

While chapter five has the summary, conclusion, bibliography, and recommendations, which highlight that there is a need for an electoral process for the survival of democracy in Nigeria, as well as a research questionnaire and a questionnaire format instructor.

Chapter one

1.0 Background of Study

In every democratic system, the electorate chooses people who will represent its interests at the government level and set the direction for their socioeconomic development.

Elections are thus used as a critical tool to elect individuals who will be in positions of authority and champion the course and well of the populace while also maintaining peace and stability in the state.

In Nigeria, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was established in 1998 by Major General Abdusalam Abubaka, who succeeded their head of state, Major General Sani Abuacha,

who died mysteriously prior to Abucha’s departure. He had in place an election that would usher in the democratically elected government on October 1, 1998.

However, after his death, the Abubaka’s regime, cognizant of the role of the electoral commission, dissolved the NECON and set-up -the independent National Election Commission (INEC) charge to organise and ensure an effective election and smooth transition of power military government respectably,

thus, to ensure the holistic conduct of the elections, state independent electoral commissions were set upon or established in all the emergence of Imo State Ind

As a result, in order to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the role of electoral commissions in advancing democracy in Nigeria, IMSIEC was chosen as a case study because it is an integral part of an independent national electoral commission.

However, the population for this research endeavour was made up of 120 IMSEC employees and 52 members of the general public selected at random.

1.1 Statement of Problem

People in Nigeria had made explicit calls over the random way and pattern in which the electoral commission

In the past, elections have often resulted in corruption and violence, costing valued lives and property.

Furthermore, the problems of election malpractice, rigging, ballot box and paper hijacking among the rank and file of the claimed independence electoral commission officials, which remorsefully, in most cases, erupt crises by destabilising the policy.

Furthermore, the issue of late arrival and lack of proper election materials in most polling stations, as well as an erroneous voter list, which occasionally disenfranchises eligible registered electorates from exercising their civil responsibilities.

Most crucially, the electoral commission’s non-neutrality constitutes still another big issue. It is undeniable that the many electoral commissions we have had in the past have been unfairly influenced by some party stalwarts in proclaiming a manipulated result in favour of candidates who would have lost the election.

Furthermore, the commission understands that he who pays the piper dictates the time; hence, there is every possibility that the ruling party’s influence will undoubtedly affect the statutory performance of the independent electoral commission.


Recognising that a particular polity’s peace and stability cannot be treated with a kid glove approach, the requirement for an effective and efficient functional mechanism of power transition from one democratically elected administration to another becomes unquestionably vital. In light of the foregoing, this study tries to achieve the following goal.

(1) Assess the performance of the electoral commission in Nigeria, particularly the independent national electoral commission (INEC).

(2) To investigate the electoral commission’s role, functions, and operations in relation to national stability.

(3) Analyse the electoral commission’s challenges, obstacles, and shortcomings.

(4) Examine the characteristics of a free and fair election in Nigeria.

(5) To highlight the challenges that the military poses to the conduct of free and fair elections in Nigeria, using Imo State’s independent electoral commission as an example.


This research effort was limited to Imo state only, and the scope of this study will not surpass the use of questionnaires and personal interviews through requests for relevant materials and available documents from the chainman, the researcher.

Despite these limits, the researcher was able to make headway using the resources available to him, given the constrained time frame.

1.4 Significance of Study

The relevance of the findings cannot be overstated. This researcher’s work is therefore important in the following areas.

(1) It is significant in the following areas. Federation of Nigeria, as some of them will be informed by its disclosure.

Some of them play a negative role in securing power.

(2) It will serve as a wake-up call to the electorate, who will be exposed to some critical issues beyond their comprehension.

(3) It will also be significant to the politicians who allow their selfish interests to come into play on the collective interest of the people in Nigeria.

(4) It will serve as a morale booster for officials of the independent national and state electoral commissions, emphasising the critical role they play in advancing democracy in Nigeria.

(5) It is important for students who want to conduct additional study on the course being discussed.

(6) It will also expose research on important issues influencing the country’s stability.

1.5 Theoretical Framework

It is understandable that the mechanisms in which elections are organised allow leaders to emerge as the defining forms of politics. As a result, this research is supported by both the Car/Max theory and the western liberal theory.

The Marxist idea of polities was concerned with society. Individuals and economies. It was predicated on production, reproduction, and the material survival of any community.

As a result, the Marxist sees politics as a fight or conflict for control of the state, an economic and social institution, with the outcome being the partition of society into two hostile classes, the bourgeoisies and the proletariat.

In another evolution, the western liberal ideology defines politics as all human activity aimed at attaining, using, and preserving governmental authority.

Max Webs is one of the more profound proponents of this idea among the above theorists. It is important to note that how people see power impacts their involvement in influencing the political process simply to protect power.

1.6 Statement of Hypothesis

The researcher developed the following hypotheses to help him verify the correctness of his assertion on the ground.

Note Ho: represents the null hypothesis.

Hi: The alternate hypothesis mentioned below represents the hypothesis developed by the researcher.

Hypothesis I

H0: The electoral process in Nigeria does not significantly affect the electorate’s political interests.

Hi: The electoral mechanisms used in Nigeria greatly encourage. The political interests of the electorate.

Hypothesis II

H0: The electoral process in Nigeria does not significantly promote the actions of ethnic militia.

Hi: The electoral systems used in Nigeria considerably foster the activity of ethnic militias.

Hypothesis III

H0: The electoral systems used in Nigeria do not considerably improve nation building.

Hi: Nigeria’s electoral processes contribute greatly to national building.

1.7 Operational Definition of Terms

(1) INEC: Independent National Election Commission.

(2) IMSIEC: Imo State Independent Election Commission.

(3) ELECTORATE: A country’s citizens who have the right to vote.

(4) ELECTION: the process of selecting someone or a group of people for a leadership post.

(5) VOTE: A choice made by a participant in a group decision.

(6) Democracy: A system of governance in which the people elect representatives at the federal, state, and local levels.

(7) DEVELOPMENT: The progressive improvement of a society’s socioeconomic conditions.

(8) FRANCHISE: The right of an individual to vote for candidates.

(9) POLITICS: The structure and administration of the state.

(10) POLITICIANS: individuals who engage in political activities.

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