By IFEOMA AKA
ENUGU- A lawmaker in Enugu State, Mr Innocent Ugwu, has blamed election violence in the country on desperation by politicians to win elections at all cost.
Ugwu, representing Igbo Eze North Constituency II in the state House of Assembly, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Enugu on Wednesday.
He said that many politicians in the country were desperate to win elections, when they have no record of integrity, performance and academic credentials.
He said that instead of preparing for elections in line with the provisions of the Electoral Act, they always resorted to actions that would provoke violence.
“They want to win elections at all cost, hence the desperation.
“Politicians are very conversant with rules of the game but the truth is that most of them cannot face the electorate.
“They have nothing on ground to campaign with, hence they would engage thugs to help them win elections,” he said.
Ugwu called for an electoral reform that would recommend stiffer penalties for electoral offenders.
“If not, we are going nowhere in the quest to curb electoral violence.
“Both voting and collation of results must be done electronically so that the efforts of desperate politicians causing violence during elections would be curtailed,” Ugwu said.
He expressed concern that many elected office holders in the country preferred to perpetuate themselves in office even when their performance in office was too poor.
He regretted that such politicians would employ violent means to secure another term in office, using their ill-gotten wealth to recruit unemployed youths as thugs.(NAN)