Niger trains election observers ahead of legislative polls


The Independent Centre for Good Governance and Development (OABD) trained 80 independent election observers ahead of the 20 October legislative elections in Niger, APA notes Wednesday in Niamey.

These observers will be dispatched in the eight regions of the country to oversee the conduct of various scheduled elections, trainer and OABD chair Ibrahim Massaoudou said.

He added that various “evils” must be addressed in Niger including “corruption, nepotism, neglect, chronic absenteeism and chaos.”

He pointed out that Niger is in a “decisive phase of its history, in terms of launching countless gigantic development projects.”

“But for this new start to be successful, our country needs credible republican institutions whose establishment will operate on the basis of democratic, free and transparent elections,” Massaoudou said.

The 20 October elections, he said, will enable Niger to “return to normal constitutional order,” which prompted the training of independent observers.

Some 760 candidates are vying to fill the 113 seats in the Nigerien parliament after President Mamadou Tandja dissolved the House in late May, and the adoption of a new Constitution.

Candidates from two dozen political parties and independent candidates are electioneering from 28 September to 18 October.

These legislative polls are part of the new Constitution adopted in August, following a referendum the Nigerien head of state organized against the advice of the Constitutional Court.

The controversial referendum, boycotted by the opposition and condemned by the international community, took place after President Tandja dissolved in turn the Parliament and the Constitutional Court, and amended the electoral law.

African Press Agency

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