Senator Magnus Abe, formerly representing Rivers South-East Senatorial District, has identified godfathers and money as major problems the electoral process in Nigeria faces.
Abe spoke at a symposium organized to mark his 56th birthday celebration by the Rivers Voice of Freedom in Port Harcourt, the state capital.
The former lawmaker stated that the foundation of everything wrong in the country is the electoral process.
“We have a process whereby the preference of only the leader counts. The leader can handpick a thug, an armed robber, a greedy man, somebody that nobody in the society respects,” he said.
Abe warned that the manner democracy in Nigeria is being practiced will not lead the people out of the present economic and social predicament.
“If we have a situation where nobody can determine the outcome of an election, no leader would come up and say this is what I want,” he added.
The politician also noted that when the people are allowed to decide, things will change for good.
He said once godfathers observe that they can no longer compromise the process, they will keep their money.
Abe further lamented how Nigeria spends so much on elections, with eighty percent of resources going into the process.
He observed it had gotten to the stage budgets for elections now include monies to give to voters.
Abe said if the electorates, observers, electoral and security officials have to be paid, whoever wins such an election will not be accountable.
“We must have elections in which money has no place, godfathers have no place. The leader has one vote, the follower has one vote. When we enthrone that kind of democracy, it would work for all and not just a few people”, Abe added.