The choice of your leaders determines the quality of service up to the end of their term. No position is of less importance; all government functions require competent and committed leaders for effective service delivery.
Policymakers disseminate information on the purpose of each office; the electorate makes the final choice. An election is a democracy on trial. Every voter exercises their democratic right on the ballot. Power is sweet; no politician wants to lose their seat.
Some move a step further to engage in electoral malpractice to staying power. How best can you avoid this?
Free, fair, and transparent elections start from the processes put in place by the elections body. Also, the government of the day plays a significant role in taking legal action against perpetrators. If not, it’s an exercise in futility.
You need to have an in-depth analysis before, during, and after the elections. The systems you put in place, as well as the policy, act as a guide. Implementing them is yet another thing. In that case, here are some things that promote a transparent process.
- Empower Voters Through Civic Education
The young and the elderly voter population are vulnerable to voter fraud, for they may be naïve when exercising their rights.
The first-time voter may have no idea of the dos and don’ts within the rule of law. They become susceptible to selfish leaders. Some use them to invite the public to violence that leads to violence.
Corrupt election officials also take advantage of electoral illiteracy to use the ballot to favor their candidate.
Civic education can be in the following ways
- Use of administrative officers to disseminate information
- Education through the media
- Posters and flyers on effects of electoral vices
- Civic education on legal procedures to follow rather than violence
- Conferences, seminar and capacity building workshops for politicians
The electoral body has a role to play to educate the public on their right to have a transparent electoral process.
- Encourage Voter Registration
Voter apathy is never deliberate. It’s a trick some politicians use to get back to power. Without a voter’s card, you aren’t eligible to vote. With information, people get to know when and where you should register.
Voting starts at the voter registration, politicians fund and use all resources to ensure their backyards-where they are sure of support to have a near- hundred percent voter registration.
It’s an advantage against an opponent. They avail materials and even provide financial support to the personnel to favor that area to understand its impact on the voting process.
Third-world countries with analog voter registration take advantage of the weak system to have double registration and even use people who aren’t in existence to register as voters in the area of interest.
Some go the extra mile to transport voters. A digitalized voter registration process helps to minimize all these vices for that open process.
- Engage International Observers
As long as you have a third eye keeping everything in check, there is the certainty of the process. International observers are people from different countries with high moral standards who are physically present to check the administration and operations during Election Day.
They further report to the international organization that can sanction and release travel bans to the countries. Travel bans negatively affect the economy and minimize foreign aid, which diminished foreign supplies crucial in running the economy.
- Use Secret Ballot Policy.
The secret ballot is the most proven and transparent way of electing leaders. Your vote is your secret, and no one has any say over whether your friend or relative is the one looking for a post. It helps to make a voter exercise her right without fear.
Even the officials have no power to tell you who to vote for; they guide you on where to place the ballot papers. They come in handy to aid physically impaired individuals to also exercise their democratic right.
This voting system makes one free to cast their vote to their preferred candidate based on their judgment.
- Make Good Use of Electoral Personnel.
One vow electoral personnel is never to misuse their power to favor a candidate. That explains why during interviews of the head of the electoral body is under public scrutiny.
The personnel is responsible for civic education and training of electoral officials to ensure they are at par with policies and guidelines that govern the process. Political leaders should campaign and let the voters do their work.
That is the day they should vote and go to the golf club to wait for the results. Playing may not be ideal due to anxiety but watching others do it under a golf simulator. The golf simulator makes it safe to play at the comfort of your seat. What a great resolution never to engage in electoral malpractice!
- Legal Measures for Politicians Who Violate Electoral Policies
The rule of law is a wake-up call for politicians, for they know what awaits them if they are found guilty of breaking the law.
The government and the constitution should have harsh legal measures that make politicians nit to run away with the vices in the name of getting to power. The legislative arm of government comes in handy to implement it to the latter.
- Digitalized Voting
The digitalized voting process makes the operation honest and open. Once you cast your vote, it’s directly transmitted to the tallying center for tallying.
It makes voters satisfied with the results even if they aren’t their preferred candidate.
Every country has a role to play to have a fair voting process depending on the systems in place to promote it.