The leadership went further to also control the electoral bodies to accomplish the task they did, by simply “awarding” the “votes” they wanted to the President of Venezuela, Maduro, and declaring him and his party the winner. Under such situation, any talk of electoral integrity or the Electoral Performance Index (EPI), is a waste of time, to say the least. The Venezuelan Society is now in terrible internal security crises as a consequence of these electoral mal-practices.
(c) Relatively Autonomous National Security System (RANSS) or Architecture: This position presupposes that the national security apparatus is neither captured nor autonomous. In most advanced democracies, national security is relatively autonomous because they cater to some extent, for the common good of all citizens. The state operates a policy of freedom of information as the media have access and are empowered to seek for information. However, laws of secrecy exist and not all information is available at all times to the public. Within the electoral integrity context, such countries where the national security architecture is relatively autonomous, will certainly score higher than the ones in which the national security systems are totally captured.
Even within Africa, countries where the national security system is relatively autonomous have higher PEI scores than others. That explains why Mauritius, Ghana and South Africa had better overall PEI index compared with others such as Equatorial Guinea, Djibouti and Mozambique. The national security systems and electoral commissions in Mauritius, South Africa and Ghana are relatively autonomous, whereas the ones in Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea and Mozambique are fully captured by the powers that be in those countries. In the later countries, electoral results are therefore given based on the directives of the leadership rather than actual voting patterns in the field during elections.
The second broad approach, is the Organizational Determinant Categorization of National Security Systems or Architectures. This second approach also categorizes National Security System or Architectures into three types. These are: (i) the Segmentary National Security System (SNSS) or Architecture; (ii) the Coordinated National Security System (CNSS) or Architecture; and (iii) the Integrated National Security System (INSS) or Architecture. The three key distinguishing words are: Segmentary, Coordinated and Integrated. Each of these National Security Systems or Architectures has its advantages and disadvantages, and different effects on electoral integrity as well, which are considered briefly below.
(i)Segmentary National Security System (SNSS) or Architecture
The Segmentary National Security System (SNSS) or Architecture tries to apply the principle of federalism or even Confederalism to the security of a country. Under this arrangement, the country’s security arrangement is left to the individual military or security services or their special units. In the event of security threats, each Service adopts its own strategy in repelling the threat. Individual Service Chiefs or Heads of Security Agencies therefore, mobilise their men and weaponry in the defence or securing of whatever target is threatened. There is little or no harmonization of efforts by the various Services or Agencies and no coordination of their attack/reaction to the enemy or enemies.
There is usually little or no communication and reporting across Services or Agencies during the operations. With the exception of South Africa and Libya (during President Gadhafi), all other African countries (including Nigeria) have adopted the Segmentary Security System or Architecture at one time or the other, even though the degree of application varied from one country to the other.
Because this approach is not effective, it allows room for internal security threats and creates fertile ground for the emergence of insurgencies. These internal crises and insurgencies become serious obstacles to the conduct of elections and diminishes electoral integrity and good governance, as a whole.
In Nigeria, for instance, under the administrations of former Presidents Shehu Shagari and Goodluck Jonathan, the Military and other security Agencies all operated separately, with little coordination and integration between them and other Security Agencies. This became more visible in their different strategies and operations regarding the control of the Maitatsine Religious Uprising, Boko Haram Religious Insurgency and the Herdsmen and Farmers clashes all over the Nation, especially in the North Central Zone of Nigeria. In the event of any security threat, as is the case with Boko Haram terrorists and the Herdsmen and Farmers clashes, therefore, these Services reacted differently, with little coordination and integration of their efforts.
(ii) Coordinated National Security System (CNSS) or Architecture
The CNSS ensures that all Services, Agencies and Units assigned with the responsibility of national Security are closely monitored and supervised. This is close to the INSS approach, except that in this case, the Agencies and Units are not brought under one top command umbrella. The closest example of coordinated national security system in operation in Nigeria, was during the Governments of General I.B. Babangida at the time of Alhaji Muhammadu Gambo Jimeta as the National Security Adviser (NSA). This system is certainly more effective than the segmentary one. However, it is not as effective as an integrated national security architecture.
(iii) The Integrated National Security System (INSS) or Architecture
The INSS or Architecture is the most comprehensive approach to National Security yet devised. It has also proved, in practice, more effective than the rest discussed here so far. It is variously referred to by security and strategic studies experts as the “multi-services” or “multi-faceted national” security system. In Nigeria, this approach had been adopted only by General Yakubu Gowon, during the Civil (Biafra War) of 1967-1970; General Aliyu Mohammed Gusau when he was the National Security Adviser under the regimes of General I.B. Babangida, Chief Ernest Shonekan and Chief Olusegun Obasanjo. It was also adopted by Alhaji Ismaila Gwarzo, during General Sani Abacha’s regime.
This INSS or Architecture, is a comprehensive and demanding approach to National Security. It is also the most effective and efficient one ever devised so far. Because General Yakubu Gowon adopted this integrated national security architecture, he was able to complete the Nigerian Civil War and re-integrate the Ibos (Biafrans), who were fighting to be independent from Nigeria in only thirty months.
Similarly, using this integrated security system, General Babangida was able to crush the then “Boko Haram” insurgency, Maitatsine Religious Uprising, which was spreading like fire, within three months during his Administration.
Dr. Mou writes from Lagos