From: Uche Nnorom, Makurdi
In order to eliminate violence and manipulation which has often characterized Student Union election, the Benue State University has introduced electronic Voting (e-voting).
Hitherto, Students Union election in the institution has always witnessed a lot of violence with cultists hijacking it.
Our correspondent was at the institution yesterday and reported that students were enthusiastic about the innovation which is happening under the leadership of the new Vice Chancellor Prof. Tor Iorapuu
Some of them who spoke with our correspondent including Torkuma Aver, a 100 student of Political Science, Veronica Apeh, 200 level Mass Communication student lauded the University management for the initiative, noting that it has to a large extent eliminated violence, thuggery which had been the trademark of union election in the school.
“Hitherto, there was no peace during SUG election. The whole exercise was ways marred by violence perpetrated by cultists. Before, the whole school would have been in panic as you will see strange faces and hear gun shots which eventually leads to the closure of the institution but now, we can conduct the election under a very peaceful atmosphere. We hope this will be sustained”they appealed.
The Director,ICT Mr. Terna Abuul explained that the new VC came up with this innovation as a way of digitalizing operations in the school, adding that it is meant to avoid overcrowding because of COVID-19 pandemic.
Mr. Abuul said the technology is an off the shelf software which the University subscribed to.
“It is not a Nigerian developed system. It is foreign technology. It is cloud based and nobody can penetrate it.
“Now, the system operates this way. Only students who have paid their institution fees and are registered on the school portal are eligible to vote.
“We now harvested the names of such candidates and voters to constiutute our voters’ regsiter. On the day of the election (Wednesday 2nd May, 202), students received SMS and a link to their email addresses. We had instructed them to update their emails and the phone numbers they intended to use to ensure that they are authentic.”