By CHIDI NKWOPARA
The Catholic Archbishop of Owerri Ecclesiastical Province, His Grace, Dr. Anthony J.V. Obinna, has lamented the cost of financing electoral programmes in Nigeria.
Dr. Obinna, who made his feelings known after registering as a voter at Owerri Girls Secondary School, regretted that as at the time of talking with the press, the cost stood at N133 billion.
“A total cost of N133 billion will be spent to prepare for the general election. It will be a colossal loss to the country if such huge sum is spent and we still don’t have a free, fair and transparent election,” the fiery Catholic cleric said.
He opined that because of Nigeria’s inability to conduct free, fair and credible polls, it would not be out of place to try what he called “cosmic ballot system.”
“This process would only absorb the screened and cleared candidates of the parties from where little children would be randomly chosen to pick from a box of wrapped names.
“The first name, for instance, becomes the governor, while the second becomes his deputy,” Obinna suggested.
The cleric urged Nigerians to conduct themselves as civilized and decent people who would not give in to forgery, thuggery and other manipulations that could mar the electoral process.
“The good deeds of politicians seeking our mandate must precede their campaigns. People must not mortgage their consciences with stringed donations of money, bags of rice, salt, soap or other items. Nigeria must get it right now or never. This is our last chance,” Obinna said.