The former chairman of Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Prof Attahiru Jega has said that INEC should jealously protect its relative independence ahead of the 2023 elections to prevent the reversal of the gains recorded in the electoral process since 1999.
He said INEC had both administrative and financial autonomy that is the envy of other electoral bodies in African countries.
Jega made the remarks while delivering a keynote address at the conference organised by the management of Tell Magazine to mark 20 Years of Democracy in Nigeria.
The conference which is holding at the Shehu Yar Adua Centre, Abuja, had the theme “Democracy and the Rule of Law”.
Prof Jega also lamented that for many reasons voters turn out during elections had been declining since 1999.
He warned that the situation might persist in 2023 if steps are not immediately taken to address the various challenges.
He called for specific reforms from INEC to strengthen the processes, while all hands should be on the deck to address other challenges.