Tuesday, 1 November 2016

online voting system

CHAPTER ONE
INTRODUCTION

1.1 BACKGROUND OF STUDY

  The federal republic of Nigeria comprises of 36 states, the federal capital territory (FCT), and 774 local government areas (LGAs). The country is located in West Africa and shares land borders with the republic of Benin in the west, Chad and Cameroon in the east and Niger in the north. The three largest ethnic groups in Nigeria are the Ibo, Hausa and Yoruba ethnic groups. 
In Nigeria, General elections are conducted every four years, where a head of state the president and the national assembly representatives are elected. They are elected by the people. The national assembly has about 360 members representing various constituencies. 

Most African electoral bodies with no exception to INEC, even with the advancements of technology, still use primitive paper based methods during voting; this system is characterized by manual form filling to chose leaders and transfer of information from manual data capture forms to computerized datasheets, this has led to a high number of mistakes making their way into the final votes count. The main advantage of the paper based system is the ballot papers are easily human auditable. The disadvantages outweigh the advantages for instance printing of ballot papers is slow, expensive, inflexible, environmentally hostile and also literacy limitations and last minute changes to the voter register are difficult to accommodate among others. Over the last few years some election observers have suggested the introduction of electronic voting at state and federal level. The online voting system mainly addresses the voting phase. Electronic voting process using the online voting system should be cheaper than the present paper based system been used by the independent national electoral commission (INEC). Online voting is an electronic way of choosing leaders via a web driven application. The advantage of online voting over the present manual system is that the voters have the choice of voting at their own free time and reduced congestion. It also minimizes on errors of vote counting. The individual votes are submitted in a database which can be queried to find out who the aspirants for a given post has the highest number of votes. 
With the online voting system, a voter can use his/her voting right online without any difficulty. He/she has to register as a voter first before being authorized to vote. The registration should be done prior to the voting date to enable data update on the database.

1.2     STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEMS

The statements of the problem include the following:
Bribery and Tuggery: Bribery has eaten deep into the electoral system, a lot of people are involve in collecting gratification from the politicians thereby selling their conscience and their votes, it is due to the fact that the economic situation is not stable, there is a lot of people dying of hunger and starvation in our communities, this is common in the past election most people even go to the extent of thumb printing on ballot papers throughout the night when official voting as not started, this is a cardinal point of rigging an election using the INEC officials to supply voting materials to top politicians in a particular area, hence a resident electoral commissioner of INEC would visit a big name(politician) in its territory of jurisdiction as a mark of loyalty to pave way for smooth flow of their corrupt tendency perpetuated at the pulls. 
Tuggery is rampant in the aspect of our youths, today most politicians have tugs whom they use to disrupt election and steal ballot boxes from pulling stations. 
Stepping down of elected officials: In this regard all elected officers ranging from the presidency, the Governors to the local Government Chairman should step down before the general elections is conducted, this is due to the fact that such officials have influence over the election in their respective domain, they have the power to hijack the electioneering materials thereby dictating the area where ballot boxes would be sent to and not to be sent.
Invalid votes: A vote is considered to be invalid if the thumbprint has not been placed at the right spot. Also, a ballot paper which is improperly folded can be the cause of an invalid vote.
Long voting process: The manual voting exercise involves a number of steps that result in long queues. This is because each voter takes a considerable amount of time to vote.
Delays in result publication: It has been gathered that it takes the INEC about three days to eventually publish a presidential election result.
High cost of election organizing: The procurement of materials that ensure the validity of the voter’s registration, as well as the complete success of the electoral process makes election costs very high. Indelible ink, ballot boxes and papers as well as other logistics, despite being expensive, are indispensable in a manual voting system.
Unauthorized announcement of election results
Harassment of candidates, agents and voters
Box-switching and inflation of figures.

1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY

The objectives of this project work include the following:
To develop a module for voters to effectively carryout the task of voting automatically and timely.
To eliminate the missing of ballot papers and election results.
To develop a system that will stop double voting by some voters in Ebonyi State.
To develop a module that will generate accurate report and election results quickly.
To develop a module that will serve as a means of registration for both the candidates and the voters.
To develop a module that will provide a platform for voters to cast their votes
To develop a module that will serve as accreditation for the voters.
To eliminate the invalid votes.
To develop a highly automated web based system with highly security level.

1.4. SCOPE OF STUDY.

The study covers voting processes as it is done at the ward councillorship elections, local government chairmanship elections, the gubernatorial elections and presidential elections. 
The study is done in Ebonyi Local government area of Ebonyi State. 

1.5 LIMITATION OF STUDY

Time factor, which is the greatest barrier to the successful completion of this project work, I had financial constraints to traveling to get this work ready and also there is some information that I request from the INEC officials that were not provided for me.

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