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Nigeria nixes plans for biometric election


The chairman of the Independent Electoral Commission in Nigera has announced that the country will not use biometric technology for its upcoming 2015 elections.

Reported in Humanipo, the country’s constitution prevents e-voting and it’s unlikely that this could be reformed in time for the 2015 elections. Recommendations for ammendments to the National Assembly have been submitted by the electoral commission, but according to the report, it’s still unlikely that change could be implemented in time to make biometric voting a reality.

Reported previously, the Nigerian Society of Engineers recently recommended that the electoral commission use the Nigerian Communication Satellite e-voting platform, which hinges on biometric enrollment.

Previous elections in both Ghana and Kenya which made use of biometric technology were plagued with problems.

Following elections in Kenya, the  machines were heavily criticized for technical problems which led to long delays and in many cases, non-functional verification devices.  There were reports of machines malfunctioning or shutting down completely.

In Ghana’s 2012 election, in which biometric machines were also used, results are still being contested, following confusion over the status of verification machines during and after the election.

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