THE ROLE OF EFCC IN CURBING ELECTORAL MALPRACTICES IN NIGERIA (A CASE STUDY OF EFCC HQ ABUJA)
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
The level of electoral malpractice in the country is assuming an alarming rate. The fear of possible attacks, box snatching and threats persistently mars many election processes in many parts of Nigeria. An electoral fraud is the illegal interference with the process of election so as to influence the result of the election in favour a particular candidate. Electoral frauds include changing election result, adding more of votes to favor a candidate, reducing the opposing candidate’s number of votes. Use of underage persons to acquire large Votes, using unregistered citizens to acquire mass votes, snatching ballot boxes to add more ballots for the favoured party candidates, compiling results in favour of a candidate, Intimidation, and improper counting of votes. It is as a result of high level of corruption and fraud encountered in electoral processes that led to the introduction of the EFCC to arrest financial and economic crimes.
(EFCC) otherwise referred to as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission is the second anti-corruption agency set up by the federal government to combat financial and economic crimes. The mandate of the Commission is to empower ,prevent, investigate, prosecute and penalize economic and financial crimes and is charged with the responsibility of enforcing the provisions of economic and financial crimes laws such as : Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Establishment act (2004), the Failed Banks (Recovery of Debts) and Financial Malpractices in Banks Act 1994, the Banks and other Financial Institutions Act 1991 , the Money Laundering (Prohibition) act 2004, the Advance Fee Fraud, the Money Laundering Act 1995 and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, , and Miscellaneous Offences Act.
EFCC has shown some resilience since its inception to tackle economic and financial crimes in the country. Consequently the fight was taken into the political sector due to the increasing wave of electoral fraud in the Nigeria’s electoral process. The powers of the commission included ensuring good governance, transparency and accountability in government. Arrest and investigates cases of abuse of office by public office holders, corruption in the electoral process, bribery of government officials, diversion of public funds through fraudulent award of contracts, money laundering , and promoting good governance. The study seeks to appraise the role of EFCC in curbing electoral malpractices in Nigeria; A case study of EFCC HQ Abuja.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The consequence of Electoral fraud in Nigeria is fast weakening the democratic process and institution of the nation. This as a result has lessened the people’s confidence and support for democratic institution in Nigeria. The level of political apathy is high, giving way for corrupt politicians to hijack electoral processes to fulfill their ill selfish ambitions to the detriment of the electorate and the nation at large. The Institutions of democracy is expected to encourage the people’s participation in the electoral process so as to exercise their will in a free and fair democratic manner to exercise their votes for the election of the leaders of their choice. This process strengthens and stabilizes democratic development. However the increasing level of organized electoral fraud perpetrated at the national, state and local levels calls for deliberate action by government and other stakeholders to rise up to the challenge so as to revive and enthrone democratic principles , true leadership and governance in the country.
Consequently, the problem confronting the study is to appraise the the role of EFCC in curbing electoral malpractices in Nigeria; A case study of EFCC HQ Abuja.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The main study objective is to investigate the role of EFCC in curbing electoral malpractices in Nigeria; A case study of EFCC HQ Abuja. While the specific objectives of the study include;
1. 1 To appraise the level of electoral malpractices in Nigeria.
2. To determine the effect of electoral malpractices.
3. To determine role of the role of EFCC in curbing electoral malpractices in Nigeria; A case study of EFCC HQ Abuja.
1.3 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. 1 What is level of electoral malpractices in Nigeria?
2. What is the effect of electoral malpractices in Nigeria?
3. What is the role of EFCC in curbing electoral malpractices in Nigeria; A case study of EFCC HQ Abuja?
1.4 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
Ho1: There is no significant role of EFCC in curbing electoral malpractices in Nigeria.
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The current wave of electoral malpractices is fast weakening the democratic principles in the country. This has resulted to a high level of political apathy. The study seek to call the attention of stakeholders to arise and tackle the menace with the view of reviving democratic institution and good governance in the country. It shall also be useful to government policy makers.
1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study focuses on the role of EFCC in curbing electoral malpractices in Nigeria; A case study of EFCC HQ Abuja.
1.7 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The study was confronted with logistics constraints.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
ELECTORAL VIOLENCE DEFINED
The act of conflict, physical assault, destruction, intimidation which seek to disrupt and influence the electoral process.
The act of exacting pressure on the electorate so that they vote in a particular direction.
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