There is no denying that Nigeria has a dark past, marked with election rigging and military coups that resulted in evil dictators. It is part of the history that we should accept, embrace and make sure that it never happens again. In this same spirit a coalition of individuals and youth-led organizations have come together to form EiE (Enough is Enough). This is an organization dedicated to promoting a culture of good governance and public accountability in Nigeria using advocacy, activism and the mobilization of the youth population to create responsible citizens. This organization has created ReVoDa, a mobile app that allowed voters to report independent citizen observers from their respective Polling Units across Nigeria.
According to Nigeria’s Independent National Electoral Commission, at least 80% of the country’s 68,833,476 voters have potentially participated in the on-going President and Parliamentary elections. In the eyes of the creators of ReVoDa all these people have been vital in the observation of the election. Nigeria’s mobile penetration numbers (167,371,935 people have mobile phones), with 45 million people having access to the internet and as a result to Facebook. These are the people who have been vital in keeping the world updated about the breakdown of technology issues and the attacks by the extremist group Boko Haram.
All one needs to do to register is to send in their name and polling unit number via their mobile phone. Once registered Nigerians will be empowered to share anything fishy that they may see to EiE who will then alert the relevant authorities. Additionally EiE will be able to send information about the electoral process to registered users, keeping them up to date about what is going on at other polling stations. It is worth mentioning that this service is being offered completely for free, which is commendable because nobody should have to pay to receive updates about the election.
Innovations such as this have the potential to change how elections are run in the country, on the continent and in the world. This may seem like a bold statement but it is the truth. As citizens we often forget that the reason behind queuing hours and hours in line is to elect people to do a job for us. They gain the authority to become a president or a law maker from us and they carry out this mandate with the interest of their represents being the forefront of their tenure in their respective elected positions. ReVoDa is basically empowering the citizens to take back their elections without fear or prejudice!