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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://bsuir.bsum.edu.ng:8080/jspui/handle/11409/524

Issue Date: Mar-2019
Abstract: The study "The 1999 General Elections and Democracy in Benue State" was to ascertain whether the 1999 General Elections were carefully planned and executed in line with international best practices or not, and to be able to see how if at all, that has been able to produce credible political leadership and as well as strengthened democratic institutions and structures to thrive. The study is descriptive in nature and generated data from both primary and secondary sources. The population used is the number of registered voters in Benue State for the 1999 General Elections which stood at two million, nineteen thousand, eight hundred and fifty one (2,019,851), from which a sample size of four hundred (400) was chosen based on Taro Yemene's formula. Survey instruments including questionnaire and oral interviews were the primary data deployed to gather the needed data from the study population. Extant literature on the subject matter were reviewed to be able to identify gaps which hopefully have been filled by the study. The underlying theoretical framework for the study was the Elite theory. Based on the above, the study arrived at the findings that, the 1999 General Elections were fairly well conducted by the military particularly with regards to logistic arrangement, security of electoral materials and personnel, collaboration between Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), security agencies and civil society groups, among others. There were however, cases of irregularities such as snatching of ballot boxes, late arrival of results, aiding and abetting of rigging by security personnel, though, at a minimal level. The irregularities notwithstanding, the 1999 General Elections in Benue State had some implication on political development as it laid the foundation for an enduring constitutional order, political stability and a reliable procedure for succession to leadership in the state and indeed Nigeria. It also offered opportunity for mass mobilization of the electorate, political participation and unity. This was in addition to building democracy, increasing the capabilities of power holders or political and institutional structures as indices of political development in the state. The study indicated that though the 1999 General Elections laid the foundation for democracy and constitutional order in Nigeria after many years of military rule, that election alone could not enhance political development, but was a basis upon which the subsequent elections of 2003, 2007 and 2011 were executed. Thus, the study concludes that even though democracy has been considered in the state, there are yet some fhallenges with our elections and the electoral process in Benue State, and these have affected the process of political development. The study therefore recommends among other things that for democracy to be fully achieved in the state, the electoral process must be strengthened. Both the 1999 Constitution and the 2010 Electoral Act should be amended to provide stiffer penalties for the violation of electoral process. By these, elections in Benue State will always reflect the true wishes of the people and hence guarantee mature political structures and institutions which are the bedrock for political development.
URI: http://bsuir.bsum.edu.ng:8080/jspui/handle/11409/524
Appears in Collections:Political Science

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