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THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

SULEIMAN MOHAMMED JAMIU

The Impact of Electoral Fraud on National Security


METHODS IN SOCIAL SCIENCE RESEARCH

THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

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Abstract Elections in Nigeria are widely believed to be fraudulent in various ways, a claim some support especially by looking at voter turnout, voter registration and in extension post-election conflicts. Nigeria since independence fifty years on has witnessed elections of different forms which have always been characterized by electoral fraud as observed by both local and international analysts. These electoral frauds have often led to one form of conflict or the other leading to insecurity in the nation. This study is expected to address the major causes of electoral fraud, its effect on national security and how to curb such.

THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

Introduction Background of the study In the fifty years of Nigeria as a nation, the dominant political system has not been democracy. Owing to various reasons and failures on the part of all stakeholders in the Nigerian project, attempts at enthroning and sustaining democratic political system in the country have only lasted for short periods of time. In addressing the challenge to the survival of democracy in Nigeria, it is pertinent to consider security issues and problems that have affected or capable of affecting the attitude, confidence and cooperation of all groups and segments that makes up the Nigerian federation. It is also necessary to explore the gaps and grey areas in the national constitution that are responsible for various problems and crises and how these gaps can be addressed. Some of the major security problems currently confronting the nation have been identified to include: political and electioneering conflicts, socioeconomic agitations, ethno-religious crises, ethnic militias, boundary disputes, cultism, criminality and organised crimes. For the better part of the fifty years of Nigeria as a nation, the country was under military administration resulting from military takeover of the democratic and

THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

constitutional structures of the state. The military takeovers are security breaches resulting from a wide range of reasons, sometimes a culmination of a number of security and political developments. The security, political and sometimes socio-economic developments are security concerns that were not addressed or managed by the existing state structure at the time. Electoral fraud poses a major challenge to democracy in Nigeria and by implication, poses threat to the security of the nation. Electoral fraud is illegal interference with the process of an election either consciously or unconsciously. In Nigeria elections have been characterised by one form of electoral fraud or the other which have led to one form of conflict or the other too.

THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

Statement of Problem It is no longer news that electoral fraud is ravaging democracies of mostly third world countries. Violence erupts following electoral fraud and people are dying every day due to this. In Africa it has become all the more worrisome because due to poverty and illiteracy among others the crisis continues to deepen and thus having a devastating effect on the continent. Looking at this, there is particularly the need to understand why electoral fraud is becoming widespread in Nigeria especially among the elite. In addition what effect does it have on National security? Lastly and importantly too, is the above not a threat to the nations interest and by extrapolation her security.

THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

Aims and Objectives of study The objectives are categirised into the general and specific objectives. The general objective is aimed at appraising the forms of electoral frauds in Nigeria from independence, while the specific objectives are as follows; a. Examine the electoral fraud associated with different governments in Nigeria and how they came to power. b. Provide an understanding to why electoral frauds shape the societies of most third world countries. c. Evaluate the impact of post-election violence on the nation d. Appraise the impact of electoral fraud on national security.

THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

Significance of study This study is particularly significant in view of the need for both understanding and curbing of the increasing rise in electoral fraud and violence in Nigeria and its effect on national security. The significance of this study can also be seen as contributing to the development of knowledge within the scholarship of strategic studies.

THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

Research questions 1. Why are electoral frauds common in third world countries? 2. What impact would it have on national security? 3. Would we say that electoral fraud is part of politics? 4. Lastly and importantly, how do we put an end to electoral fraud in Nigeria?

THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

Theoretical framework While it could be stated that there are different perspectives of viewing the electoral process, either from a group, game or power perspectives among others. The study through the use of the classical elite theory unfolds the machinations and manipulations of political parties by the elites. This theory is based on two ideas: 1. Power lies in position of authority in key economic and political institutions 2. The psychological difference that sets Elites apart is that they have personal resources, for instance intelligence and skills, and a vested interest in the government; while the rest are incompetent and do not have the capabilities of governing themselves; the elite are resourceful and will strive to make the government to work. For in reality, the elite have the most to lose in a failed government. The major proponents of this theory include Vilfredo Pareto, Gaetano Mosca, Robert Michels, C. Wright Mills and Floyd Hunter.

THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

Vilfredo Pareto Pareto emphasized the psychological and intellectual superiority that the Elites obtained, he believed that the elites were the highest accomplishers in any field and he discussed how there were two types of Elites 1. governing elites 2. non-governing elites He also extended on the idea that a whole elite can be replaced by a new one and how one can circulate from being elite to nonelite. Gaetano Mosca Mosca emphasized the sociological and personal characteristics of elites. He said elites are an organized minority and that the masses are an unorganized majority. The ruling class is composed of the ruling elite and the sub-elites. He divides the world into two groups: 1. ruling class 2. class that is ruled Mosca asserts that elites have intellectual, moral, and material superiority that is highly esteemed and influential.

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Robert Michels Sociologist Michels developed the Iron Law of Oligarchy where, he asserts, social and political organizations are run by few individuals, and social organization and labor division are key. He believed that all organizations were elitist and that elites have three basic principles that help in the bureaucratic structure of political organization: 1. Need for leaders, specialized staff and facilities 2. Utilization of facilities by leaders within their organization 3. The importance of the psychological attributes of the leaders C. Wright Mills Mills published his book The Power Elite in 1956, claiming a new sociological perspective on systems of power in the United States. He identified a triumvirate of power groups - political, economic and military - which form a distinguishable, although not unified, powerwielding body in the United States. Mills proposed that this group had been generated through a process of rationalization at work in all advanced industrial societies whereby the mechanisms of power became concentrated, funneling overall control

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into the hands of a limited, somewhat corrupt group. This reflected a decline in politics as an arena for debate and relegation to a merely formal level of discourse. This macro-scale analysis sought to point out the degradation of democracy in "advanced" societies and the fact that power generally lies outside the boundaries of elected representatives. A main influence for the study was Franz Leopold Neumann's book, Behemoth: The Structure and Practice of National Socialism, 1933-1944, a study of how Nazism came to power in the German democratic state. It provided the tools to analyze the structure of a political system and served as a warning of what could happen in a modern capitalistic democracy. Floyd Hunter The elite theory analysis of power was also applied on the micro scale in community power studies such as that by Floyd Hunter (1953). Hunter examined in detail the power relationships evident in his "Regional City" looking for the "real" holders of power rather than those in obvious official positions. He posited a structural-functional approach which mapped the hierarchies and webs of interconnection operating within the city mapping relationships of power between businessmen,

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politicians, clergy etc. The study was promoted to debunk current concepts of any democracy present within urban politics and reaffirm the arguments for a true representative democracy. This type of analysis was also used in later, larger scale, studies such as that carried out by M. Schwartz examining the power structures within the sphere of the corporate elite in the USA. G. William Domhoff In his controversial book Who Rules America?, G. William Domhoff researched local and national decision making process networks in order to illustrate the power structure in the United States. He asserts, much like Hunter, that an elite class that owns and manages large income-producing properties (like banks and corporations) dominate the American power structure politically and economically. James Burnham Burnhams early work The Managerial Revolution sought to express the movement of all functional power into the hands of managers rather than politicians or businessmen separating ownership and control. Many of these ideas were adapted by paleo conservatives Samuel T.

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Francis and Paul Gottfried in their theories of the managerial state. Burnham's thoughts on Elite Theory were elucidated more specifically in his book The Machiavellians which discusses the thoughts of, among others, Pareto, Mosca, and Michels; it is here that Burnham attempts a scientific analysis of both elites and politics generally. Robert D. Putnam Putnam saw the development of technical and exclusive knowledge among administrators and other specialist groups as a mechanism by which power is stripped from the democratic process and slipped sideways to the advisors and specialists influencing the decision making process. "If the dominant figures of the past hundred years have been the entrepreneur, the businessman, and the industrial executive, the new men are the scientists, the mathematicians, the economists, and the engineers of the new intellectual technology." (Putnam, Robert D. (1976)).

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Thomas R. Dye Dye in his book Top Down Policymaking, argues that U.S. public policy does not result from the "demands of the people," but rather from Elite consensus found in Washington, D.C. based non-profit foundations, think tanks, special-interest groups, and prominent lobbyists and law firms. Dye's thesis is further expanded upon in his works: The Irony of Democracy, Politics in America, Understanding Public Policy, and Who's Running America?

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THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

Scope and Limitations of the study Though this study is to appraise the 2011 general election, a lot has to be said about previous elections in Nigeria. This study is different from other studies because it is one of the most current events in the country and its appraisal will continue for a long time. Like some studies, this research is constrained by mostly time. The information was mostly gotten from the mass media as no books or publications have been written or published on this research yet. However, these limitations do not adversely affect the major findings of this research.

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Methodology For the success of this study, only one form of data collection was used. This form of data collection known as the secondary method includes the use of textbooks, magazines, internet, newspapers, journals and documents collected from Independent national electoral commission (INEC) and other agencies.

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Theoretical overview Electoral Fraud Electoral fraud desecrates the sanctity of democracy and weakens its capacity as an instrument for the mobilisation of national, human and material resources for the development of the people and the state (Goodluck Jonathan 2011). Electoral fraud poses a major challenge to democracy in Nigeria and by implication, poses threat to the security of the nation. If the government had allowed insecurity to prevail, it will be obvious that it will undermine the integrity and credibility of the democratic process and make life more difficult. The anger and frustration would attain a worsening dimension due to the absence of proper and just means of seeking redress. People will resort to violence and the consequences of increased violence will be proportionate with the

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events that led to the collapse of the First Republic. Given this conceptualization, it is not surprising that scholars usually argue that the incidence of electoral fraud, which comes in the form of political violence, vote-buying, influence, and various forms of procedural vote rigging (Lehoucq 2003), is the product of political actors efforts to tilt the electoral playing field in their direction, thereby aiming to reduce the indeterminacy of elections. Electoral fraud violates what Dahl (1971) defines as the two main criteria of democratic elections, fair (i.e., equal rights to have votes counted equally) and free (not subject to intimidation, bribery, etc.) For amore thorough elaboration of the myriad of issues at stake with these two criteria (free and fair) elections, (Thompson 2002). There are several variants of this argument. In one view, the more competitive elections are, the more likely electoral fraud since the electoral stakes are higher for all participants (Lehoucq and Molina 1999, 2002). In another important account, the relationship is not so direct although the causal logic is similar: in some instances politicians will commit election fraud even when elections are not close to discourage future electoral competition (Simpser 2005). Finally, a third perspective is that the relationship between electoral competition and

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electoral fraud is mediated by electoral institutions (Birch 2007; Chang and Golden 2007; Hicken 2007). This research has found, for example, that electoral manipulation ismore likely in majoritarian or plural singlemember systems than in proportional systems. It is correct to argue that partisan motivations are present in fights over the outcomes of elections. An explanation of electoral fraud that remains silent on the structural conditions underpinning it, as well as the precise causal pathways leading to fraud, is incomplete. Such an account fails to address who the perpetrators of fraud actually are, how they overcome complex collective action problems entailed in committing fraud, and what actions they deploy. Thus, in addition to being attentive to how the strategic environment set by elite competition and partisanship affect actors preferences, it is crucial to highlight the societal contexts in which elite actors and political institutions operate that may determine the capacity of elites to carry out electoral fraud, one powerful mechanism of limiting uncertainty over electoral outcomes (Alexander2002). This position is attested to by recent social unrests in various African countries that have roots in the failure of government policies to provide

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or manage the basic human needs of their citizens. So, if electoral fraud is a serious challenge to the security of a nation, the steps taken by President Jonathan so far are in the right direction. Kidnapping is no longer attractive as government has continued to match its promises with actions. In the Niger Delta and the South Eastern part of Nigeria were the crime was prevalent, peace has returned and everybody, whether foreign nationals or Nigerians are free to go about their lawful duties without any form of harassment. The crisis in Jos, Plateau State has been brought under control. The few cases of attacks experienced these days are pockets of criminal attacks. The ethnic dimension the crisis almost took at a time it started has abated. There was also the spate of bomb blasts across the nation, which most analysts attributed to those who are bent on frustrating the good works of Jonathan. Thank God, the security agencies have since arrested the trend. This all goes to show that the Jonathan administration has done well, security-wise.

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Causes of Electoral Fraud Electoral fraud which has been defined as the illegal interference with the process of an election in order to affect the result of an election has been an on-going thorny issue with respect to various political campaigns for presidency and other offices in the federal and state government thereby creating conflict in the democratic system. Electoral fraud is not limited to political polls and can happen in any election where the potential gain is worth the risk for the cheat; as in elections for labour union officials, student councils, sports judging, and the awarding of merit to books, films, music and television programmes. Types of Electoral Fraud The two main types of electoral fraud are: preventing eligible voters from casting their vote freely (or voting at all) and altering the results.

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Though also called voter registration, intimidation at polls, improper vote counting amidst several others. These acts of fraud affect vote counts to bring about an election result, whether by increasing the vote share of the favoured candidate, depressing the vote share of the rival candidates or both. Electoral fraud varies from country to country. Many kinds of voters fraud are outlawed in electoral legislation but others are in violation of general laws such as those banning assault, harassment or libel. Although technically, the term electoral fraud covers only those acts which are illegal, the term is sometimes used to describe acts which are illegal, the term is sometimes used to describe acts which although legal, are considered to be morally unacceptable, outside the spirit of electoral laws or in violation of the principles of democracy. Elections, in which only one candidate can win, are sometimes considered to be electoral fraud although they may comply with the law. In national elections, successful electoral fraud can have the effect of a coup dtat or corruption of democracy because it may change the result in favour of the losing candidate. Likewise in a narrow election, a small amount of fraud may be enough to change the result. In a

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situation where the result is not affected it can still have a damaging effect on the body polity because if it goes unpunished, it can reduce voters confidence in the democratic process. Surprisingly, even the perception of fraud can be damaging as it makes people less inclined to accept election results, this can in turn lead to a breakdown of democracy and the establishment of a dictatorship. Methods of electoral fraud Electorate manipulation Most electoral fraud takes place during or immediately after election campaigns, by interfering with the voting process or the counting of votes. However it can also occur far in advance, by altering the composition of the electorate. In many cases this is not illegal and thus technically not electoral fraud, although it is sometimes considered to be a violation of principles of democracy. Gerrymandering This is the drawing of electorate boundaries in order to produce a particular result. Typically, electorates will be organized so that one group of people (for example poor people or a particular ethnic or religious group) is concentrated into a small number of electorates. This means that parties favoured by that group will win by a large majority in

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those electorates, but lose more narrowly in a larger number of electorates. This may result in one party gaining the most votes overall but still losing the election. Gerrymandering is most common under plurality voting systems, in which the winner must win the most electorates rather than the most votes overall. In many cases gerrymandering occurs within, or is the result of, electoral law. However it may sometimes take the form of true electoral fraud, for example if laws governing the drawing of electoral boundaries are broken, or officials are bribed or otherwise coerced into altering boundaries in a way which favours a particular group. Manipulation of demography In many cases it is possible for authorities to artificially control the composition of an electorate in order to produce a foregone result. One way of doing this is to move a large number of voters into the electorate prior to an election, for example by temporarily assigning them land or lodging them in flophouses. Many countries prevent this with rules stipulating that a voter must have lived in an electorate for a minimum period (for example, six months) in order to be eligible to vote there. However, such laws can themselves be used for demographic manipulation as they tend to disenfranchise those with no fixed address,

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such as the homeless, travellers, students (studying full time away from home) and some casual workers. Another strategy is to permanently move people into an electorate, usually through public housing. If people eligible for public housing are likely to vote for a particular party, then they can either be concentrated into one electorate, thus making their votes count for less, or moved into marginal electorates, where they may tip the balance towards their preferred party. One notable example of this occurred in the City of Westminster under Shirley Porter. In this case the electoral fraud relied on gaming the United Kingdom's first past the post electoral system, as in such a system it does not matter how much a party wins or loses by. The fraudsters calculated which wards they had no hope of winning, which they were sure of winning and which wards were marginal. By manipulating Westminster Council's public housing stock the fraudsters were able to move voters more likely to vote for their electoral enemies from marginal wards to the wards that they were going to lose anyway. In the ensuing elections the opposition could only win their safe seats with the small Conservative leads in the marginal wards being enough for them to win these wards, and therefore maintain their majority position and control of the council. In her

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defence Porter raised the history of the provision of public housing in London and the context of Herbert Morrison's boast to "...build the Conservatives out of London" by building new public housing in marginal Conservative seats. Immigration law may also be used to manipulate electoral demography. An example of this happened in Malaysia when immigrants from neighbouring Philippines and Indonesia were given citizenship together with voting rights in order for a political party to "dominate" the state of Sabah in a controversial process referred to as Project IC. A method of manipulating primary contests and other elections of party leaders is related to this. People who support one party may temporarily join another party in order to help elect a weak candidate for that party's leadership, in the hope that they will be defeated by the leader of the party that they secretly support. Disenfranchisement The composition of an electorate may also be altered by disenfranchising some types of people, rendering them unable to vote. In some cases this may be done at a legislative level, for example by passing a law banning convicted felons, recent immigrants or members

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of a particular ethnic or religious group from voting, or by instituting a literacy or other test which members of some groups are more likely to fail. Since this is done by lawmakers, it cannot be election fraud, but may subvert the purposes of democracy. This is especially so if members of the disenfranchised group were particularly likely to vote a certain way. In some cases voters may be invalidly disenfranchised, which is true electoral fraud. For example a legitimate voter may be 'accidentally' removed from the electoral roll, making it difficult or impossible for them to vote. Corrupt election officials may misuse voting regulations such as a literacy test or requirement for proof of identity or address in such a way as to make it difficult or impossible for their targets to cast a vote. Groups may also be disenfranchised by rules which make it impractical or impossible for them to cast a vote. For example, requiring people to vote within their electorate may disenfranchise serving military personnel, prison inmates, students, hospital patients or anyone else who cannot return to their homes. Polling can be set for inconvenient days such as midweek or on Holy Days (example: Sabbath or other holy days of a religious group whose teachings determine that voting is a prohibited on such a day) in order to make voting difficult for those

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studying or working away from home. Communities may also be effectively disenfranchised if polling places are not provided within reasonable proximity (rural communities are especially vulnerable to this) or situated in areas perceived by some voters as unsafe.

Intimidation Voter intimidation involves putting undue pressure on a voter or group of voters so that they will vote a particular way, or not at all. Absentee and other remote voting can be more open to some forms of intimidation as the voter does not have the protection and privacy of the polling location. Intimidation can take a range of forms. Violence or the threat of violence: In its simplest form, voters from a particular demographic or known to support a particular party or candidate are directly threatened by supporters of another party or candidate or those hired by them. In other cases supporters of a particular party make it known that if a particular village or neighbourhood is found to have voted the 'wrong' way, reprisals will be made against that community. Another method is to make a general threat of violence, for example a bomb threat in Niger state which has

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the effect of closing a particular polling place, thus making it difficult for people in that area to vote. Attacks on polling places: Polling places in an area known to support a particular party or candidate may be targeted for vandalism, destruction or threats, thus making it difficult or impossible for people in that area to vote. Legal threats: In this case voters will be made to believe, accurately or otherwise, that they are not legally entitled to vote, or that they are legally obliged to vote a particular way. Voters who are not confident about their entitlement to vote may also be intimidated by real or implied authority figures who suggest that those who vote when they are not entitled to will be imprisoned, deported or otherwise punished. Economic threats: In company towns in which one company employs most of the working population, the company may threaten workers with disciplinary action if they do not vote the way their employer dictates. One method of doing this is the 'shoe polish method'. This method entails coating the voting machine's lever or button of the opposing candidate(s) with shoe polish. This method works when an employee of a company that orders him to vote a certain way votes contrary to those orders. After the voter exits the voting booth, a

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conspirator to the fraud (a precinct captain or other local person in collusion with the employee's management) handshakes the voter. The conspirator, then, subtly checks the voter's hands for any shoe polish or notes. If the conspirator finds shoe polish or notes in the voter's hands, then that unfortunate voter gets fired or faces other unpleasant consequences. Vote buying The most famous episodes of vote buying came in 18th century England, when two or more rich aristocrats spent whatever money it took to win. The notorious "Spendthrift election" came in Northamptonshire in 1768, when three earls spent over 100,000 each to win a seat. Voters may be given money or other rewards for voting in a particular way, or not voting. In some jurisdictions, the offer or giving of other rewards is referred to as "electoral treating". In Mexico, Queensland and several other places, voters willing to sell their vote are asked to take a picture of their ballot with a cell phone camera to validate their payment. Vote buying may also be done indirectly, for example by paying clergymen to tell their parishioners to vote for a particular party or candidate. Vote buying is generally avoided by not providing a

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"receipt" for the counted vote, even if it's technically possible to do so. Considering the level of poverty in the country, vote buying was prominent in Nigeria where people were willing to sell their voting rights for money. With the advent of closed ballot system though, voters are now free to collect money from Mr A and eventually vote for Mr B.

Misinformation People may distribute false or misleading information in order to affect the outcome of the election. Most commonly, smear campaigns (the circulation of false rumours) are made against a particular candidate or party. An example was the rumours spread via text messages by opposition that Rochas Okorocha of APGA was disqualified from voting by INEC. Smear campaigns are not necessarily illegal and can therefore not always be considered election fraud. However in some countries smear campaigns may violate libel or slander laws and in others, as the Philippines, such campaigns are specifically illegal. Another way in which misinformation can be used in voter fraud is to give voters incorrect information about the time or place of polling, thus causing them to miss their chance to vote. Misleading or confusing ballot papers

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Ballot papers may be used to discourage votes for a particular party or candidate, using design or other features which confuse voters into voting for a different candidate. For example, in the United States presidential election, 2000, Florida's butterfly ballot paper was criticised as confusing some voters into giving their vote to the wrong candidate. Ironically, however, the ballot was designed by a Democrat, the party most harmed by this design. Poor or misleading design is not usually illegal and therefore not technically election fraud, but can subvert the principles of democracy. Another method of confusing people into voting for the wrong candidate is to run candidates or create political parties with similar names or symbols as an existing candidate or party. The aim is that enough voters will be misled into voting for the false candidate or party to influence the results. Such tactics may be particularly effective when a large proportion of voters have limited literacy in the language used on the ballot paper. Again, such tactics are usually not illegal but often work against the principles of democracy. Ballot stuffing Ballot stuffing is the most common form of electoral fraud used in Nigeria, it occurs when a person casts more votes than they are entitled

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to. In its simplest form, ballot stuffing literally involves 'stuffing' multiple ballot papers into the ballot box. Another method is for voters to cast votes at multiple booths, on each occasion claiming that it is their only vote. In some countries such as Nigeria, India, El Salvador, Namibia or Afghanistan voters get a finger marked with election ink to prevent multiple votes. In Afghanistan's elections of 2005, this method failed as the ink used could easily be removed. A more subtle technique is personation, in which a person pretends to be someone else. The person whose vote is being used may be legitimately enrolled but absent, a real but deceased person, or entirely fictitious. A particularly unsubtle form of ballot stuffing, known as booth capturing occurs in Nigeria. In these cases a gang of thugs will 'capture' a polling place and cast votes in the names of legitimate voters, who are prevented from voting themselves. In jurisdictions with absentee balloting, an individual or a campaign may fill in and forge a signature on an absentee ballot intended for a voter in that jurisdiction, thus passing off the ballot as having been filled out by that voter. Such cases of voter fraud have resulted in criminal charges in the past. Misrecording of votes

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Many elections feature multiple opportunities for unscrupulous officials or 'helpers' to record an elector's vote differently from their intentions. Voters who require assistance to cast their votes are particularly vulnerable to having their votes stolen in this way. For example, a blind person or one who cannot read the language of the ballot paper may be told that they have voted for one party when in fact they have been led to vote for another. This is similar to the misuse of proxy votes; however in this case the voter will be under the impression that they have voted with the assistance of the other person, rather than having the other person voting on their behalf. Where votes are recorded through electronic or mechanical means, the voting machinery may be altered so that a vote intended for one candidate is recorded for another. Misuse of proxy votes Proxy voting is particularly vulnerable to election fraud due to the amount of trust placed in the person who casts the vote. In several countries there have been allegations of retirement home residents being asked to fill out 'absentee voter' forms. When the forms are signed and gathered, they are then secretly rewritten as applications for proxy votes, naming party activists or their friends and relatives as the proxies.

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These people, unknown to the voter, then cast the vote for the party of their choice. This trick relies on elderly care home residents typically being absent-minded, or suffering from dementia. In the United Kingdom, this is known as 'granny farming' and has been restricted in recent years by a change in the law which prevents a single voter acting as a proxy for more than two non-family members therefore requiring more people to be involved in any fraud. Destruction or invalidation of ballots One of the simplest methods of electoral fraud is to simply destroy ballots for the 'wrong' candidate or party. This is unusual in functioning democracies as it is difficult to do without attracting attention. However in a very close election it might be possible to destroy a very small number of ballot papers without detection, thereby changing the overall result. Blatant destruction of ballot papers can render an election invalid and force it to be re-run. If a party can improve its vote on the rerun election, it can benefit from such destruction as long as it is not linked to it. A more subtle, and easily achieved, method is to make it appear that the voter has spoiled their ballot thus rendering it invalid. Typically this would be done by adding an additional mark to the paper, making it

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appear that the voter has voted for more candidates than they were entitled to. It would be difficult to do this to a large number of papers without detection, but in a close election may prove decisive.

National security There is a single universally accepted definition of "National Security". A typical dictionary definition, in this case from Farlex dictionary, defines national security as the following: "The requirement to maintain the survival of the nation-state through the use of economic, military and political power and the exercise of diplomacy." However, a variety of definitions provide an overview of the many usages of this concept. The concept still remains ambiguous, having originated from simpler definitions which initially emphasised the freedom from military threat and political coercion to later increase in sophistication and include other forms of non-military security as suited the circumstances of the time.

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Walter Lippmann gave one of the early definitions in 1943 in terms of a nation and war: "A nation has national security when it does not have to resort to war, or the threat of war, to preserve its legitimate interests." A later definition by Harold Lasswell, a political scientist, in 1950, looks at national security from almost the same aspect, that of external coercion: "The distinctive meaning of national security means freedom from foreign dictation." Arnold Wolfers (1960), while recognising the need to segregate the subjectivity of the conceptual idea from the objectivity, talks of threats to acquired values: "An ambiguous symbol meaning different things to different people. National security objectively means the absence of threats to acquired values and subjectively, the absence of fear that such values will be attacked." Harold Brown, U.S. Secretary of Defense from 1977 to 1981 in the Carter administration, defined national security in his 1983 book Thinking about

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national security: defense and foreign policy in a dangerous world. The definition includes elements such as economic security and environmental security. "National security then is the ability to preserve the nation's physical integrity and territory; to maintain its economic relations with the rest of the world on reasonable terms; to preserve its nature, institution, and governance from disruption from outside; and to control its borders." In Harvard history professor Charles Maier's definition of 1990, national security is defined through the lens of national power: "National security... is best described as a capacity to control those domestic and foreign conditions that the public opinion of a given community believes necessary to enjoy its own self-determination or autonomy, prosperity and wellbeing." The United States Armed Forces defines national security (of the United States) in the following manner: National security A collective term encompassing both national defense and foreign relations of the United States. Specifically, the condition provided by:

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THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

a. A military or defense advantage over any foreign nation or group of nations; b. A favorable foreign relations position; or c. A defense posture capable of successfully resisting hostile or destructive action from within or without, overt or covert. In 2010, Barack Obama included an all-encompassing world-view in his definition of America's national security interests as: The security of the United States, its citizens, and U.S. allies and partners; A strong, innovative, and growing U.S. economy in an open international economic system that promotes opportunity and prosperity; Respect for universal values at home and around the world; and An international order advanced by U.S. leadership that promotes peace, security, and opportunity through stronger cooperation to meet global challenges. The issue of national security is very vital in any nation. In fact, once security is not guaranteed in any nation, its economic development will

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THE IMPACT OF ELECTORAL FRAUD ON NATIONAL SECURITY

be gravely affected since no investor puts his/her money in an environment of crisis. More so, the citizens can only exert their best potentials in the right peaceful environment (Ibrahim Sodandi 2010). National security is the requirement to maintain the survival of the state through the use of economic, military and political power and the exercise of diplomacy. The concept developed mostly in the United States of America after World War II. Initially focusing on military might, it now encompasses a broad range of facets, all of which impinge on the military or economic security of the nation and the values espoused by the national society. Accordingly, in order to possess national security, a nation needs to possess economic security, energy security, environmental security, etc. Security threats involve not only conventional foes such as other nation-states but also non-state actors such as violent non-state actors, narcotic cartels, multinational corporations and non-governmental organisations; some authorities include natural disasters and events causing severe environmental damage in this category. Measures taken to ensure national security include: using diplomacy to rally allies and isolate threats

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marshalling economic power to facilitate or compel cooperation maintaining effective armed forces implementing civil defense and emergency preparedness measures (including anti-terrorism legislation)

ensuring the resilience and redundancy of critical infrastructure using intelligence services to detect and defeat or avoid threats and espionage, and to protect classified information

using counterintelligence services or secret police to protect the nation from internal threats

Under military rule in Nigeria, international investors and even tourists were scarce and most governments, especially that of United States of America and United Kingdom always warned their citizens of the imminent danger in investing in Nigeria or even visiting. All these, however, have changed with the advent of democracy, and recently more traffic of investors and tourists are flooding Nigeria. This is a big testimony to the effective national security policy of this government. When votes count, then, security risk and electoral violence will gradually decline. This is the case even though Nigeria witnessed increasing security problems and developments that constituted threats

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to the survival of its democratic political system. These security concerns are diverse and complex, ranging from political disagreements to criminal activities with alarming consequences. Democracy in its essence implies the interplay of various interests and shades of opinions in the mode of political parties and pressure groups. This interplay must be undertaken in an open, free and fair atmosphere with adherence to such fundamental principles like tolerance, freedom of expression and choice. Unfortunately, the activities and conducts of past and present participants in the Nigerian democratic space have failed to adhere to these key principles. Desperate, intolerant and ruthless contests among political parties, political leaders and their followers have often resulted in violence, security breaches, killings and destruction which threaten the very democracy that they seek to partake in. It was these tendencies that set off the problem in the Western Region in 1965 that set in motion developments leading to the collapse of the First Republic. General Abdusallami Abubakar, Nigerias former Head of State at the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies, NIPSS Kuru had once stated that in addressing the challenge of national security and the survival of democracy in Nigeria, it is pertinent to consider security issues

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and problems that have affected or capable of affecting the attitude, confidence and cooperation of all groups and segments that make up the Nigerian federation. Thus, there is need to explore and address the grey areas in the constitution that are responsible for various problems. The Jonathan administration and General Owoeye Azazi at the apex of the security agencies have identified the issues to include: political and electioneering conflicts, socio-economic agitations, ethno-religious crises, ethnic militias, boundary disputes, cultism, criminality and organised crimes. These problems constitute threats to the peace, security and development of the country and do have implications for the continuity and survival of democracy. It is a welcome development now that democracy is being deliberately constructed as a positive response to these problems.

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Conclusion Time and again, attempts to defraud voters, candidates and political parties of the proper results of a genuine election are unearthed. Unfortunately, the federal government today is generally ill-prepared to overcome the fraud challenge. The single most important omission is the electoral fraud control plan. The sooner federal government is willing to recognize that their own systems can also be exposed to electoral fraud, and develop and implement such a plan, the sooner they can ensure that the outcomes of their elections express the will of the electorate. Technical assistance provided must strengthen their abilities to match this new focus on combating electoral fraud. Electoral fraud experts

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should be available and training programs for officials on electoral fraud should be developed, especially on how to conduct fraud assessments and develop electoral fraud control plans. Political parties and domestic and international observer missions all perform important anti-fraud functions. However, this has shown that they currently do not excel in their tasks to detect and deter electoral fraud. Only by improving how they operate and becoming more professional will they fulfill these important functions. Donors need to upgrade the fight against electoral fraud to the strategic-level in their democracy and governance portfolios by introducing anti-fraud activities among their aid program indicators. Such a decision would send a strong and clear message to all actors on the electoral scene that fraud is no longer acceptable. Nigeria since independence fifty years on has witnessed elections of different forms which have always been characterized by electoral fraud as observed by both local and international analysts. These electoral frauds have often led to one form of conflict or the other leading to insecurity in the nation.

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References
Bottomore, T. (1993). Elites and Society (2nd ed.). London: Routledge. Cynthia Ann (2008). U.S. national security: a reference handbook. Contemporary world issues (2 (revised) ed.). ABC-CLIO. Davis, Robert T. (2010). Robert T. Davis. ed. U.S. Foreign Policy and National Security: Chronology and Index for the 20th Century. Praeger Security International Series (Illustrated ed.). ABC-CLIO. Domhoff, G. William (1967). Who Rules America?. McGraw-Hill. Hunter, Floyd (1953). Community Power Structure: A Study of Decision Makers. OBAMA, BARACK. National Security Strategy, May 2010. Office of the President of the United States, The White House.[1]. Accessed 23 September 2010. Paleri, Prabhakaran (2008). National Security: Imperatives And Challenges. New Delhi: Tata McGraw-Hill. Putnam, Robert D. (1977). "Elite Transformation in Advance Industrial Societies: An Empirical Assessment of the Theory of Technocracy". Comparative Political Studies Putnam, Robert D. (1976). The Comparative Study of Political Elites. New Jersey:

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Prentice Hall. Schwartz, M. (ed.) (1987). The Structure of Power in America: The Corporate Elite as a Ruling Class. New York: Holmes & Meier. Taylor, Gen Maxwell (1974). "The Legitimate Claims of National Security". Foreign Affairs (Council on Foreign Relations, Inc.) (Essay of 1974).

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