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Last Updated: Thursday, 23 August 2007, 15:22 GMT 16:22 UK
Nigeria to review electoral laws
Man walks down deserted street in Abuja
The streets of Abuja are normally full of traffic
Nigerian President Umaru Yar'Adua has set up an electoral reform committee following criticism of widespread fraud in last April's polls.

Mr Yar'Adua's spokesman says the committee will review the electoral processes.

The committee will also consider possible changes to the constitution.

The announcement comes as a European Union election observer mission presented its final report on the conduct of the polls.

Local and international observers have said the elections were simply not credible because of widespread abuses.

Last April, President Yar'Adua's governing Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) came to power on the back of elections condemned at home and abroad as simply not credible.

Mr Yar'Adua, mindful of this, promised immediately to address the issue of electoral reform to try to ensure more credible polls.

Now he has announced a 22-member committee to do that job.

It is led by a former chief justice and includes members of civil society groups who were devastating in their criticism of April's general elections.

The BBC's Alex Last in Lagos says the committee's remit is broad, but adds that there are doubts about whether its recommendations will be implemented and whether they would make a difference.

He also says political office is seen as a quick avenue to immense wealth in Nigeria where many politicians and their parties will do just about anything to get elected.

The fact is most people here know what went wrong and why, he says.

The question is will it change the next time Nigerians vote in general elections in four years' time.


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