Saturday, 5 March 2022

Could Ukraine Be Putin’s Afghanistan?


Even before Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine earlier on 24 February,several commentators, including former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, argued convincingly that a Russian occupation of more of Ukraine, perhaps including Kyiv, would lead to an insurgency like that which the Soviet Union faced in Afghanistan in the 1980s. Defeat in Afghanistan was a major factor in the break-up of the Warsaw Pact and ultimately the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, which Russian President Vladimir Putin has called the “greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the century.”

It is important to understand how the Soviets were defeated by the mujahideen in the 1980s to understand if Ukraine could be a repeat. The Afghan resistance did virtually all the fighting against the Russian 40th Army that occupied Afghanistan starting on Christmas Eve 1979. The resistance was massive and spontaneous. But the Afghans were not alone.President Jimmy Carter rapidly mobilised a strategic alliance to fight the Russians. Within two weeks he had persuaded Pakistani leader Zia ul-Huq to support the mujahideen with refuge, bases, and training in Pakistan. 



The United States and Saudi Arabia would jointly fund the insurgency. The Pakistani intelligence service, the ISI (Inter-Services Intelligence), would be the patrons of the mujahideen; the CIA and the Saudi intelligence service would be the financiers and quarter masters of the war. No CIA officer ever was deployed in Cold War Afghanistan. The British counterparts, MI6, did send officers into Afghanistan to deliver select weapons and training. The ISI did all the rest; it was Zia’s war. The ISI trained and occasionally led the mujahideen in battle, even striking into Soviet Central Asia. Being the frontline state behind the mujahideen brought considerable risk and danger for Pakistan. 

The Russians supported Pakistani dissidents who organised terror attacks inside the country including hijacking Pakistani civilian aircraft and attempts to assassinate Zia (who died in a suspicious plane crash in 1988). Pakistani fighters engaged Soviet aircraft in dogfights. The Pakistani tribal border areas became dangerous and unruly. A Kalashnikov culture emerged that still haunts Pakistan today. For Washington and Riyadh, the operation was fairly inexpensive. The Saudi intelligence chief, Prince Turki al-Faisal, has recently written that the Saudis spent $2.7 billion supporting the Afghans; the CIA spent about the same. Saudi private sources led by then-governor of Riyadh province, now King Salman, raised another $4 billion for the rebels. Saudi citizens including Osama bin Laden joined the mujahideen but very few actually engaged in combat. 

The Afghan people paid a horrible cost for the war. At least a million Afghans died, five million became refugees in Pakistan and Iran, and millions more were displaced in their own country. But they won.The Soviets never sent enough soldiers to defeat the insurgents and could not recruit enough Afghans to fight with them. The Pakistanis were not intimidated by the Russians. The Afghan people fought for their independence. The Afghan analogy offers important questions for the new war in Ukraine. Which state or states will be the frontline sponsor? Are they ready to take the heat from Russia? 

How much support will the United States and NATO provide? Will the insurgency spark a broader conflict, and can it be contained? Are Ukrainians prepared to pay the price? Poland and Romania are the states closest to the Ukraine. Both are NATO members with U.S. troops deployed in their territory. The U.S. has an explicit commitment to come to their defense in Article Five of the NATO Treaty; we had no such commitment to Pakistan. (Ironically, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan wasv in Moscow during the week of invasionfor a long-planned visit.)



l believe the United States and NATO should help the Ukrainian resistance but we should understand the potential consequences, risks, and costs up front. Putin’s decision to attack Ukraine could well prove to be another geopolitical catastrophe for Russia but only if we help the Ukrainian resistance.

Olufemi Aduwo.

Permanent Representative,Centre for Convention on Democratic Integrity( CCDI) ,to the United Nations .CCDI Is international non governmental organisation with ECOSOC- United Nations Consultative Status.

Thursday, 3 March 2022

UKRAINE:TIME FOR SOLIDARITY


The  Center for Convention on Democratic Integrity (CCDI)  condemns  the  Russian  military  invasion of Ukraine.  It  is  an  illegal  act  of  aggression.  It  is  causing  the  death  of  innocent  civilians  and placing  the security  of  the entire  world  at  risk. The  threat  or  use  of  force  to  resolve  disputes  is  prohibited  under  Article  2  of  the  UN Charter.  Russia  was not  under  any  threat  that  offered  no  recourse  other  than  force.  In of  aggression.

Infact,  President  Putin,  in  ordering  military  attacks  against  Ukraine,  has  committed  a Crime Against  Peace  in  violation  of  the  UN  Charter  by  planning,  preparing,  initiating, and  waging a war Russia’s  acts  of  war  will  burden  Ukraine  with  an  enormous  cost  in  human  suffering, stimulate  a  massive  crackdown  on  the  civil  liberties  of law  and  peace, Russians  who  respect  international expand the  conflict,  and  even  place  the  entire  wo rld  at  risk  of  elevation  to a  nuclear  exchange.  President  Putin  has  threatened  to  use  nuclear  weapons  against adversaries  in  this  conflict.  Such  a  threat  places  the  entirety  of  civilization  in  jeopardy  and is  unacceptable. 

A  war  of  aggression  is  not  only illegal  and  immoral,  it  is  also  impractical.  Every  nation today  needs  to  cooperate  in  addressing  many  pressing  issues  such  as  climate  change, eliminating  poverty, protecting  the  health  of eliminating  the  pandemic all  species and  the  oceans,  curtailing  and ,  and  fulfilling  the Sustainable Development  Goals. We  regret  that  better  use  was  not  made  of  diplomacy,  mediation,  and  common  security mechanisms  earlier  in  the  conflict  to  address  and  resolve  historical  grievances.  We  now call  the  international  communi ty  to  use  all  non outlined  in  Ar ticles  33–- military  means  possible,  including  those 41 of the UN Charter  for  the  peaceful settlement  of those  disputes. These  provisions  of  the  UN  Charter  provide  a  route  to  mitigate,  contain,  and  reverse  the dangerous  presen t  situation  and  provide  diplomatic tools  to  obtain  peace. 

We respect the courage and rights of the people of Ukraine to exercise self-defense, express our solidarity with them, and encourage support for them from all peace-loving nations. Further, we decry the curtailing of civil liberties of Russians who do not agree with the policies of their leaders and honor their courage.    We encourage the utilisation of further diplomatic mechanisms available in the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), in which both the US and Russia are participants. We further urge the UN Security Council and the General Assembly to remain seized of the issue of ending the violence and conflict in Ukraine, and to obtain an immediate ceasefire..

Furthermore, the deployment of a UN peacekeeping mission should be considered with the consent of all parties involved. We call on world leaders to demand an immediate cessation of hostilities in Ukraine, as requested by the international public opinion, and we urge all parties and individuals in a position of influence to renew efforts for a diplomatic solution, starting with immediate negotiations under UN aegis. 

Olufemi Aduwo

President 

..CCDI is a Maryland 501 (c)(3) non-profit corporation,registered both in Nigeria and United States. Granted special consultative status by UNITED Nations/ ECOSOC

Friday, 18 February 2022

Putin


President Putin sent shock waves round the world when he amassed more than 100,000 troops armed to the teeth to surround Ukraine. Beyond his penchant to bully Ukraine and threaten its sovereignty, many of the experts in foreign affairs are yet to unravel the motive behind the build-up of arms and personnel. Was it for fear of Ukraine joining NATO? An online publication reports a former CIA chief, Don Hoffman, as saying: ‘’First of all, NATO membership is a fig leaf. It’s a red herring. Everyone knows Ukraine isn’t joining NATO anytime soon. It takes unanimous consent; France and Germany won’t give that. Putin uses that as a convenient way to frame the narrative for his disinformation propaganda. NATO is a defensive alliance but it represents anything that scares him.’’ Another expert, Chris Miller who is a former US Acting Secretary of Defence does not see the threat as deep-seated in the psyche of Russians. He believes it has some domestic undertones and calculation. He says: “…that is, that the Russians might seek to invade and occupy the portion of Ukraine that would connect Russia via land to Crimea, which Moscow annexed in 2014 and which contains a critical Russian naval base and port on the Black Sea. I think he’s just going to keep pushing until someone stands up against him, just like the playground.”

Some others think Putin is trying to reaffirm regional dominance and reassert regional influence in the place such that Russia can exercise veto over Ukraine’s foreign policy. It was also to raise tensions so as to squeeze concessions from the United States. The latter on the other hand sees the Russian action as reawakening old rivalry between the United States and the Soviet Union, and so Russia went full blast militarizing Ukraine with 11 amphibious ships and submarines and 130,000 troops. From the point of view of some other scholars a gas pipeline from Germany to Russia which is called Nord Stream 2 is the issue; it is the cause of the tension. The United States sees the collaboration as a threat capable of weakening its dominant influence in Western Europe in particular. Germans are eagerly expecting the gas supply to quickly come on stream, convinced that it would be cost effective for them. The energy would be cleaner and cheaper. Reports say once the German regulatory authority issues final certification, the supply would start.

It is seen in parts of Western Europe that the United States is opposed to the budding friendship between Germany and Russia. The chummy relationship in the reading of experts would redefine economic, military and social architecture in Western Europe. When there is economic boom in Europe it would affect the value of the Dollar thus considerably whittling down the United States influence in the region. United States panics as its influence on pristine allies is slipping off its fingers. It is, therefore, goading Russia to invade Ukraine and sour the relationship and the gas supply would be put on hold. It is believed it is an orchestration of an alarm to the American public that war was imminent in that region.

An enlightening commentary, authored by Mike Whitney, says: “The Ukraine crisis has nothing to do with Ukraine. It is about Germany and, in particular, a pipeline that connects Germany to Russia…” He adds: “In a world where Germany and Russia are friends and trading partners, there is no need for expensive US-made weapons and missile systems, and no need for NATO. There is also no need to transact energy deals in US Dollars or to stockpile US Treasuries to balance accounts. Transactions between business partners can be conducted in their own currency which is bound to precipitate a sharp decline in the value of the dollar and dramatic shift in economic power.”

The hype and worry, of Russia invading Ukraine in American Establishment does not appear would wane soon as the issue is not seen by the United States as a drive in search of economic opportunities and advantages for one of its allies, Germany. Not even by acclaimed diplomat extra-ordinary, Henry Kissinger who sees the issue other than from the American lenses. Russia, too, lent itself to a war cry with the massive militarization of Ukraine. Kissinger says: “Public discussion on Ukraine is all about confrontation. But do we know where we are going? In my life, I have seen four wars begun with great enthusiasm and public support, all of which we did not know how to end and from three of which we withdrew unilaterally. The test of policy is how it ends and not how it begins. Far too often, the Ukrainian issue is posed as a showdown: whether Ukraine joins the East or the West. But if Ukraine is to survive and thrive, it must not be either side’s outpost against the other—it should function as a bridge between them.”

What is clear looking at the issue critically is economic interest whether on the part of America or Germany. The United States finds it unsettling that one of its major allies is forging an economic union with Russia which has unwittingly chosen the time to flex its muscles and bare its teeth over Ukraine disguised as military drills. The heavy weaponry displayed was intimidating. Indeed, even the relief that Russia had ordered its troops back to the barracks was giving way to despair as an American official reported that about 7,000 more troops had been added to the 130,000 pack that are stationed at the Ukraine border. The claim by Putin is false, he said. For the United States, in addition to the economic factor, the possibility of it losing influence and its invincibility over Europe is destabilisng to put it mildly. The security council permanent members are undermining United Nations, its appropriate that United Nations should have a standing force. As its now, the sovereignty of Ukraine as a state is undermined and purveyor of the impunity ,Russian government is winning. Like l said, no single bullet would be fired by Russia,Ukraine does not want war either. We must redefined the power of the five security council permanent members.

Olufemi Aduwo

Permanent Representative ,

Centre for Convention on Democratic lntegrity [ CCDI},

A non-governmental organisation in Consultative Status with ECOSOC/United Nations.

www.ccdiltd.org

+238087047173

Wednesday, 16 February 2022

THE UNITED NATION’s VITAL ROLE IN AFGNANISTAN

On December 22, 2021, the UN Security Council voted unanimously to allow for more humanitarian assistance to reach vulnerable Afghans, while preventing the abuse of these funds by their Taliban rulers. With more than half of Afghanistan’s 39 million citizens, afflicted by drought, disease, and decades of war, depending upon critical life-saving aid to survive the harsh winter months, the decision to carve out an exception in UN sanctions against the ruling regime is timely.

At the same time, addressing the underlying political, cultural, and socioeconomic challenges that continue to fuel widespread deprivation, violence, and corruption in Afghanistan requires a strategy and targeted investments in development and peace building too. Fortunately, these are also areas where the UN maintains a decades-long track record in Afghanistan (including from 1996-2001, the last period of Taliban rule) and elsewhere.
Moreover, the Security Council’s recent request to Secretary-General António Guterres to provide strategic and operational recommendations on the future of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), by January 31, 2022, offers an opportunity to adapt the world body to the country’s fast-changing political, security, social, and economic context.

To channel fresh ideas and critical observations in advance of the Secretary-General’s presented proposals to the Security Council on Wednesday, January 26 and subsequent UNAMA mandate review in March, the Centre for Convention On Democratic lntegrity [CCDI} arrived at several, time-sensitive recommendations elaborated upon in our brief submitted to Secretary General of United Nations on Monday 14th Febuary ,titled  a new policy brief, A Step-by-Step Roadmap for Action on Afghanistan: What the United Nations and International Community Can and Should Do:

First, the United Nations should aid in negotiating some conditionalities put forward by Western powers. Whilst a step-by-step roadmap for cooperation is needed, vital life-saving humanitarian aid should never be made conditional on the Taliban taking certain actions.
Given the acute differences between the Taliban and the international community, diverse mechanisms are needed for addressing distinct humanitarian and non-humanitarian issues alike. Both sides have made opposing demands that essentially negate one another, while the needs of millions of innocent, vulnerable Afghans continue to grow.

In direct immediate support of malnutrition, urgent health services, and other kinds of emergency, life-saving support detailed in a new Humanitarian Response Plan, donor countries should take careful heed of the UN’s largest ever humanitarian appeal for a  single country  announced on 11 January 2022, requesting more than USD $5 billion this year for Afghanistan.

This follows from the USD 1.2 billion pledged by nearly 100 countries at a United Nations Secretary-General convened ministerial, on 13 September 2021 in Geneva, as well as subsequent additional pledges of humanitarian aid through international organisations, such as the World Food Program and UNDP, by South Korea,France and Norway. Second, there is a need to remain focused on the intersections of humanitarian, developmental, and peace challenges, rather than roll-out humanitarian-only models of response in Afghanistan. To advance more integrated approaches that break down the traditional siloes of the international aid system in responding to the Afghan crisis, the humanitarian-development-peace nexus offers a powerful framework.

The United Nations and other actors have implemented Triple Nexus programming in Afghanistan in recent years, including refugee return and reintegration, asset creation, and social safety net programming. The world body can play a vital role as a convening power and knowledge broker, facilitating local-international and whole-of-society dialogue on how to adapt nexus programming concepts and approaches in the uncharted territories of Afghanistan’s fast evolving and highly challenging operating environment.

As bilateral aid likely recedes among most major donors, the UN could also serve as a chief oversight body and conduit of international assistance through multiple emergency trust funds. In doing so, it will provide de facto international development coordination assistance, with an eye to maintaining for all Afghan citizens the delivery of basic public services in such critical areas as healthcare, education, and power generation.

The world body is also well-placed to support the new lslamic Development Bank humanitarian trust fund and food security program for Afghanistan, announced on December 19, 2021 at a gathering of thirty Organisation of Islamic Cooperation foreign ministers and deputy foreign ministers in Islamabad.

Third, durable peace in Afghanistan can only be reached through high-level political will that is best expressed through an empowered mandate and sufficient resources for UNAMA (ideally led by a Muslim diplomat with the gravitas and skills demonstrated by the UN trouble-shooter Lakhdar Brahimi).

For the UN to be truly catalytic, it is vital that it is entrusted with a comprehensive mandate to perform its full suite of well-known and field-tested functions, including in the areas of reconciliation, development coordination, and humanitarian action. To  get beyond the blame game and build trust between the Taliban and other Afghan parties, the world body must be allowed to provide its good offices and other peaceful settlement of dispute tools to resuscitate an intra-Afghan dialogue toward reconciliation and political reform.

At the same time, the Afghan Future Thought Forum chaired by Fatima Gailani continues to be the only independent platform that brings together influential and diverse Afghan stakeholders (men and women), including Taliban and former government officials, to produce practical solutions for long-term peace and recovery in Afghanistan. These can be done and it must be done.

Olufemi Aduwo 
Permanent Representative of
CCDI to ECOSOC/United Nations

NB: Centre For Convention On Democratic is nongovernmental organisation operates and registered in Nigeria and Maryland-United States with consultative status of United Nations.

Wednesday, 22 December 2021

FAREWELL TO A CHALLENGING YEAR, GREETINGS TO A NEW YEAR OF ACTION


By any standard, 2021 was a challenging year. We miss in-person gatherings, travels, and the sense of normality. We know that we are in a “new abnormal,” a period of disruption of old practices and old thinking. In the past year, the pandemic persisted, politics and geopolitics remained fractious, and the countless world meetings on climate, food, and biodiversity left us aware of how much the world is still held back by old ways. Yet we also detected many glimmers of hope for a better way forward. 
 
Governments around the world committed to decarbonization, even when they did not quite have plans or even a deep understanding of what they meant by their promises. The improvisations we have used to dodge COVID-19 have created new ways of work and living that look promising for the post-pandemic times ahead. There is a lot of improvisation and experimentation underway.   
 
We close 2021 with the determination to enjoy a festive holiday season and to re-energize for a big year ahead. The coming year offers many important opportunities for SDG breakthroughs, and CCDI plans on doing its part to help bring those breakthroughs to fruition. The 2022 G20 will be hosted by Indonesia and we can be confident that CCDI will be at the top of the G20 agenda. CCDI will be well-represented among the think-tank and UN processes contributing to the G20. 
  
Dear friends and colleagues, please accept my gratitude for all that you do. The challenges of sustainable development are neither small, nor easy. The victories are hard won. Yet step by step the world is learning new ways of doing things, ways that are fair, sustainable and inclusive. To our colleagues and entire members of staff  of United Nations, we look forward working side by side with all of you in 2022 to continue working together on our ever-more important efforts!
 
A Happy, Healthy, and Peaceful New Year to All,
 
Olufemi Aduwo
  
President,
CENTRE FOR CONVENTION ON DEMOCRATIC INTEGRITY
CCDI (Nigeria & United States) 
Permanent Representative of CCDI to UNITED NATIONS(CCDI )IS A NON PROFIT ORGANISATION REGISTERED IN NIGERIA AND IN THE  STATE OF MARYLAND,UNITED STATES AS  A 501[C][3],WITH  UNITED NATIONS CONSULTATIVE  STATUS .

Friday, 15 October 2021

HAPPY GLOBAL HANDWASHING DAY

October 15 is Global Handwashing Day, a global advocacy day dedicated to increasing awareness and understanding about the importance of handwashing with soap as an effective and affordable way to prevent diseases and save lives.According to WHO and UNICEF,Globally, more than 785 million people did not have access to at least basic water services and more than 884 million people did not have safe water to drink.It is the result of myriad environmental, political, economic and social forces. Freshwater makes up a very small fraction of all water on the planet. While nearly 70 percent of the world is covered by water, only 2.5 percent of it is fresh.As we are in era of a new normal,beyond COVID-19 ,Our future is at hand .This year's theme: Our future is at hand let's move forward together.Remember that pouring water in hands without soap is WETTING HANDS AND NOT WASHING.

NB: The picture above shows a community in Benue state where the entire population of more 1,304 people depend on this source of water for drinking etc My organisation,Center for Convention on Democratic Integrity and Rights Monitoring Group( CCDI & RMG) .www.ccdiltd.org and www.rightsgroup.org has the mandate of World Bank to conduct MDGs & SDGs in selected states in Nigeria which started since 2014,we discovered this community during field exercise and government inconjunction with world Bank is currently building $ 2million water project for the community.

Olufemi Aduwo President, CCDI & RMGAnd Permanent Representative of CCDI to United Nations

Thursday, 23 September 2021

CSO: CORRUPTION ALLEGATION AGAINST GOVERNOR BUNI, POLITICALLY MOTIVATED.

Governor Mai Mala-Buni, Acting National Chairman of APC



President of Rights Monitoring Group (a coalition of 45 NGOs) and Permanent Representative of a non-profit organisation, Centre for Convention on Democratic Integrity, (CCDI) to the United Nations, Mr. Olufemi Aduwo, has applauded Governor Mai Mala Buni of Yobe State for his political leadership in handling the affairs of APC as Acting National Chairman. Aduwo made this observation in his interview monitored on Radio France lnternationale last night.

I am not an ardent supporter of APC nor a card holder of PDP.  Governor Buni was underrated when he took over the mantle of the ruling party leadership, under his leadership APC has remained stable and attracted some notable politicians from the main opposition party, we cannot rule out that some who recently defected to APC may be looking for an escape route because of corruption cases they have, this may not be true across.

A political party is like a church where lepers, thieves, people of low and high virtues are all welcome. Nigerians want those who looted the national treasury to be brought to book, regardless of the political party they belong to. For example, Nigerians are waiting to see how the Femi Fani-Kayode fraud case ends before 2023.On the fraud allegation against the governor, from our preliminary findings, it is fabricated falsehood and is being instigated by some APC chieftains for their own selfish reasons. We will come out with a detailed report on the allegations soon. No doubt he must have taken some bold decisions which some chieftains were not comfortable with since he came to the office as the Acting National Chairman.

Since the return to democracy in 1999, the civil society has provided a veritable platform for the Nigerians to query government policies, actions, inactions, and detection of corruption in the public sector. For instance, our organisation and the media exposed the certificate forgery and perjury of the former speaker of the House of Representatives, Alhaji Salisu Buhari in 1999. Also, there was the scandalous questionable past of the former Senate President Evans Enwerem. We also exposed the N268m contract that necessitated the removal of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Patricia Etteh and many other members of the National Assembly.

Our petition against Bola Tinubu to the Code of Conduct Bureau did not start in 2011, we started the investigation in 2007 when he was still the governor of Lagos State. We sent our petition to President Jonathan in 2011 with pressure from foreign governments. The president summoned courage and directed the Code Of Conduct Bureau to arrange him before Code of Conduct Tribunal, unfortunately the Office of Attorney-General of federation frustrated the case and he was discharged and acquitted on a frivolous excuse that the Code of Conduct Bureau did not interrogate him before he was arraigned. Probably he could have been discharged but not acquitted and that was the position of Larmode who was the then EFCC chairman.

We agree with you that the civil society organisations in Nigeria have been ineffective in uncovering corruption in the country, this is due to lack of capacity as well as being partisan.During the tenure of Larmode as EFCC chairman, we partner with the body  and our report made it possible for EFCC to recover the sum of N6 billion. Please note, we didn't demand for any percentage.To reduce corruption, it requires the collective effort of the people and government.

Come the 2023 Presidential election, we are of the view that any tribe regardless of population can be elected president. Trust and political will are the major hallmark qualities Nigerians should look out for. We also also support the call that the presidential candidates should be within 60 and 65 years of age.

 

Thursday, 16 September 2021

AAUA Don Appointed As Senior Adviser To CCDl.


Prof. 'Lanre Olu-Adeyemi, the Head of the Department of Political Science, Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba-Akoko has been appointed as a Senior Adviser to the Centre for Convention on Democratic Integrity (CCDI). The organisation that is registered both in  Nigeria and the United States as a nonprofit.CCDI is a 501(c)(3) organisation,a tax exempt approval of federal Inland Revenue Service of United States,with Consultative status of United Nations since 2017.

The organisation was established on the ground that people’s involvement in all levels of government decision making is essential. The organisation is committed to combating corruption; promotion of enduring democracy; sustainable electoral process; monitoring of governments compliance with international treaties, which are made to promote peace and progress within and among Nation

The President of the Organisation, Olufemi S.A Aduwo (mnipr) who made the announcement on https://ccdiltd.org/leadership/ among other things informed our medium that as Adviser to CCDl , Prof. Lanre Olu-Adeyemi will be entitled to be a  designate Representative to United Nations either in New York, Geneva or Vienna,a privilege extended to the organisation by UN on the premises of the Consultative Status.

2021: INTERNATIONAL DAY OF DEMOCRACY MESSAGE FROM CCDI.

International Day of Democracy offers an opportunity for people everywhere to reflect on not only the state of democracy worldwide, but also the values that make democracy essential for the preservation of human rights and human dignity around the world.  Respect for the integrity of every individual, without exception.
Compromise,cooperation, mutual respect, rule of law, free speech, access to information, open debate and facts.  


At a time when those values are coming under siege around the globe, it behooves us on this day to take a moment to reflect on how precious they are, how essential to the dignity of our lives and what is at stake that they be preserved, protected and ultimately prevail in political life worldwide: better health, education, peace and development outcomes, as well as the mutual security and stability that results. The fact is despite the self-serving assertions by autocrats and illiberals that the future is theirs, every day billions of people around the world continue to demand their rights and dignity, that their voices be heard and that those who purport to govern them be held accountable and truly represent them.  


The global demand for democracy in fact has never been higher. Those frustrated by democracy’s failures do not seek to discard it, but to make it stronger, better, more responsive, more effective to meet the challenges of our time.  
Ultimately for democracy to prevail will require patience, resilience, vigilance, hard work, good faith and often intense struggle. Democracy is never easy, nor is it inevitable. But it remains essential.


CCDI is proud to stand in solidarity with citizens around the world seeking a democratic future, to build strong democratic societies that include and deliver for all. We reflect with humility on the courage revealing itself in Burma, Hong Kong, Nicaragua, Belarus, Russia, China, Uganda, Cameroon and so many other places, under some of the most difficult conditions of oppression and closing political space, as citizens struggle to gain democratic rights and liberties owed to them. We at CCDI recommit ourselves through our work to their cause, to demonstrate that these brave peoples are not alone, but represent the hope and promise of a better, more democratic world to come. I hope you all will reflect and join us in this effort.


Thank you. Happy International Day of Democracy.

Olufemi Aduwo

President,Centre For Convention On Democratic Integrity Ltd/ Gte( CCDI -Nigeria),lncoporated in Nigeria as Nonprofit & Center For Convention On Democratic lnc.( CCDI-lnc) Maryland,United States.CCDI-Inc is a 501(c)(3) organization.

Friday, 10 September 2021

Should Christians Be Opposed To Vaccinations?

Many believers have taken the position that they will not get the COVID-19 vaccine because they believe God will deliver them from this pandemic. I deeply admire that kind of faith. Jeremiah perhaps said it best in Jeremiah 17:7: Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose trust is the LORD. God wants our faith and trust to be in Him no doubt. With that recognition, please allow me to share my thoughts and faith on this topic.

God Almighty has always used men and women, regardless of their imperfection to accomplish His will. Remember the story of Daniel, Hananiah, Mishaal and Azariah in the book of Daniel. King Nebuchadnezzar called these men Belteshazzar, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. While there are good faith lessons from the lives of these men, notice that God blessed these individuals with knowledge, wisdom and understanding as we see in Daniel 1:17As for these four youths, God gave them learning and skill in all literature and wisdom and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams. Ultimately, this led to King Nebuchadnezzar glorifying God in Daniel 4:37Now Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honour the King of heaven, for all his works are right and his ways are just; and those who walk in pride he is able to humble.

 

Similarly, in Exodus 35:30-35 we see that God filled workers with skill, intelligence, knowledge and craftsmanship to accomplish his will in building His tabernacle. Then Moses said to the people of Israel, “See, the LORD has called by name Bezalel the son of Uri, son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah; and he has filled him with the Spirit of God, with skill, with intelligence, with knowledge, and with all craftsmanship, to devise artistic designs, to work in gold and silver and bronze, in cutting stones for setting, and in carving wood, for work in every skilled craft and he has inspired him to teach, both him and Oholiab the son of Ahisamach of the tribe of Dan. He has filled them with skill to do every sort of work done by an engraver or by a designer or by an embroiderer in blue and purpleand scarlet yarns and fine twined linen, or by a weaver, by any sort of workman or skilled designer.

We know that God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding beyond measure in 1 Kings 4:29-34: And God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding beyond measure, and breadth of mind like the sand on the seashore, so that Solomon’s wisdom surpassed the wisdom of all the people of the east and all the wisdom of Egypt. For he was wiser than all other men, wiser than Ethan the Ezrahite, and Heman, Calcol, and Darda, the sons of Mahol, and his fame was in all the surrounding nations. He also spoke 3,000 proverbs, and his songs were 1,005. He spoke of trees, from the cedar that is in Lebanon to the hyssop that grows out of the wall. He spoke also of beasts, and of birds, and of reptiles, and of fish. And people of all nations came to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and from all the kings of the earth, who had heard of his wisdom. We could see many more examples in the Bible. God uses people to accomplish His will and sometimes He gives them the knowledge, wisdom and skill they need.

Additionally, let us recognise that one of the most remarkable systems in the human body is our immune system, placed there by God himself to help defend us from disease. While mankind has tried for thousands of years to understand how to fight disease, those insights seem to come a little at a time and with each new understanding, we gain a deeper appreciation and awe of the incredible complexity and sophistication of our immune system. Only our God could design us in such a marvellous way! David expressed it well in Psalm 139:14: I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.

In March 2020, researchers were telling us that a vaccine was probably three years away. Yet the COVID-19 vaccine was developed in months, based on research that had been going on for years. The developers of the vaccines had hoped for effectiveness in the range of 70 percent, yet the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines were both well over 90 percent effective. Given that, is it so difficult to believe that God has provided insight to researchers to give them understanding and wisdom regarding our immune system, so that they could develop a means to end this pandemic? Should we not be filled with praise that his method of bringing the pandemic to an end brings glory to Him for the wonder of the immune system he created in us? Think about Naaman, the commander of the army of Syria. His story is told in 2 Kings 5:1-14. He had leprosy and he went to Elisha for healing. Elisha sent a messenger to Naaman to tell him to dip seven times in the Jordan River to be healed. Naaman was angry that Elisha sent only a messenger. He was angry that he was told to dip in the Jordan River when there were much nicer rivers back in Syria. Why should he submit to dipping in that filthy river and pollute himself?

Perhaps you do not like the people or the organisations that are asking you to get the vaccine. You may be waiting for something special, as did Naaman. Or maybe you don’t like the vaccine, because, like Naaman, you find the solution objectionable. Healing was waiting for Naaman, but he had to do something to receive the healing. The Bible is filled with examples of people of faith being required to do something. Hebrews 11, that well-known chapter on faith, chronicles those who acted. Abel offered, Enoch pleased God, Noah constructed, Abraham went, and on and on.

So here is my perspective: My faith tells me that God has heard our prayers. My faith tells me that God has shared insights with men and women who have created a solution for the pandemic. It was developed in record time and is far more effective than expected. I see God’s hand in all of this. I cannot pray to God, “Please end this pandemic,” and then limit how he should answer that prayer. I cannot ask God for his intervention and then say, “Just so long as I don’t have to get a vaccine.” There is a part for me to complete. My faith leads me to action. My faith in God leads me to get the vaccine. “Our faith and obedience to Jesus in discipleship involves dying to ourselves and taking up the cross to follow him. We are Commanded to love God and love our neighbours as ourselves. 

Loving other people can involve many things, but at minimum it involves seeking their good. The general principle of the common good comes down to benevolence, love, care for others and laying down personal priorities for the service of others. Christians thinking about vaccinations must weigh this key biblical principle in their decision-making process. My hope and prayer are that God watches over you and that your faith moves you to action. As Paul told our fellow Christians in Philippians 2:3-4, that you “in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. “Through faith in God, and in love and humility toward those around us, let’s work together to end this pandemic 

The question is why is vaccination Important? SARS-CoV-2 is spread from person to person primarily by respiratory droplets exhaled by an infected person. These droplets vary in size from large droplets that fall out of the air within six feet of the infected person to aerosols that can remain in the air over time and greater distances. These aerosols are associated with singing, shouting, and breathing heavily during exercise and can increase viral transmission in poorly ventilated, enclosed spaces. A vaccine reduces the likelihood of a person getting disease. For example, if a vaccine has 95% efficacy results, then people who are vaccinated are 20 times less likely to get COVID-19 compared to people who are not vaccinated.

Furthermore, healthy people who are vaccinated reduce the likelihood of people unable to be vaccinated, getting COVID-19 through herd immunity, or community immunity. Herd immunity occurs when enough people are immune to a disease through vaccination that the disease does not spread effectively in the population. Researchers estimate that herd immunity to COVID-19 will require 75–80% of the population to be vaccinated. Thus, people who choose to take the COVID-19 vaccine not only protect themselves, but they also help the community stay healthy. Such a choice is a practical way to “love your neighbour as yourself” (Mark 12:31COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. Misinformation and conspiracy theories fill social media, making people cautious. Yet all vaccines in the world are required to go through a rigorous process of testing and approval. 

Consider some recent statistics from the UK. In a study tracking more than 200,000 people, nearly every single participant had developed antibodies against the virus within two weeks of their second dose and despite initial worries that the current vaccines may be less effective against the Delta variant, analysis suggest that both the AstraZeneca and the Pfizer-BioNTech jabs reduce hospitalisation rates by 92-96%. As many health practitioners have repeated, the risks of severe side effects from a vaccine are tiny in comparison to the risk of the disease itself. Yeta sizeable number of people are still reluctant to get the shots. According to a recent report by the International Monetary Fund, that ranges from around 10-20% of people in the UK to around 50% in Japan and 60% in France. As of August, only 1,416,623 Nigerians among 200 million, representing 0.9 per cent of the country’s population, have been fully vaccinated against the deadly virus. Experts and WHO says a nation must vaccinate 70 per cent of its population to achieve herd immunity.

It is a fact that some people will not be able to take the vaccine at all due to other serious health conditions. When you get the vaccine, you help build up the “community immunity” that protects others. If large numbers of people are vaccinated, COVID won’t be able to spread to the most vulnerable among us. Many Christians are concerned about the possible use of fetal cells in vaccines. The good news is that no vaccines contain human cells! Moreover, the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines do not use human cells, even in the production process. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine does use a human cell line in production; this is an immortal cell line that came from a foetus aborted in 1985 (the abortion was not performed for this purpose). Yet, the cells used today are descended many generations from the original foetus and were never part of an actual human body. While the association with abortion gives many Christians pause, there is substantial agreement among Christian theologians and liberalists that the connection to foetal cell lines should not make these vaccines off-limits for Christians.

The disease is riskier than the vaccine

No vaccine is 100% risk-free, just as no medical procedure is risk free. Christians need to weigh the risks on both sides. COVID-19 is a serious disease, much worse than the flu. By now, many of us know or have heard of people who have had it. Some people have mild cases, but others have serious symptoms, hospitalisation, and long-term complications. The risks of the vaccine are less than the risks of the disease. Let’s keep praying for those who have been hit hardest by the pandemic. Let’s keep caring for our neighbours through this crisis.

Many Christians are known as most wise in discerning science, most courageous in fighting for justice, and most compassionate in caring for the sick. We should be the ones most willing to make sacrifices for the sake of others, following in the footsteps of Jesus Christ. Vaccination is a concrete way you can care for your family, your church, and your community.

Olufemi Aduwo

Thursday, 7 January 2021

History Would Be Harsh On Trump

What is happening in the United States is so shameful. It is embarrassing, a country regarded as the beacon of decency, propriety and honour, descending to the gutters and ruffians taking over.

I am happy that in the end better counsel prevailed and the victory of Joe Biden was confirmed this morning, in the wee hours of the day. The demonic entity called Trump must be tried and sent to jail at the end of his tenure. It is enheartening Mike Pence stood firm and refused Trump's intimidation and blackmail. He stood by his oath and he made it plain despite the incitement of the mob against him by Trump that he would not decertify Joe Biden. He wanted to preserve his name from going onto infamy.

It is mild to say Trump's conduct is in presidential, it is simply criminal and he should be so treated. Here is a man who was defeated in popular votes; he was defeated at the Electoral College. He was defeated in the courts up to Suprme Court. His claims were unfounded according to the Supreme Court. All that remained was affirmation by the Congress. But Trump was bent on scuttling that. His mob went into Capitol Hill armed with guns and bomb. Trump wanted chaos; he did not call for appropriate security unit such as national guard, to confront the violent protesters and clear them out of the place. It was the Washington State police who eventually did.

It is also a matter of big relief that members of Trump's Cabinet, out of embarrassment are considering getting him to resign before the 20 Jan handover date. The Reps are mulling impeaching him. The scale fell from Trump's eyes and he belatedly asked his mob to protest only peacefully. It was late. The deed was already done. He must face the consequences if his disgraceful action! Fortunately we are talking about America, a country of laws and not a country of men; a country of institutions, not a land of strong men.God Bless America!

Olufemi Aduwo, President Center For Convention On Democratic Integrity lnc,Maryland, United States (CCDI )

Wednesday, 23 December 2020

Sacking Service Chiefs May Not Be Our Solution To Ending Insurgency… Aduwo

Olufemi Aduwo Is the permanent representative of the Centre For Convention on Democratic Integrity (CCDI) to the United Nations, and president, Rights Monitoring Group. In this interview, he speaks on insurgency, #ENDSARS protest and the army engagement, among other sundry issues...

The country's biggest challenge has been insecurity, fueled by insurgency. What is insurgency and how did we get here?

The distinction between terrorism and insurgency is blurred. As a consequence, significant misunderstanding exists in the relationship between the concepts of terrorism and insurgency, terms often used interchangeably by policymakers, non-governmental organisations and the media. The terms are not interchangeable. Not all insurgencies employ terror, and not all terrorists are insurgents. Insurgencies have an alternative vision of how to organise society, and they use various instruments, ranging from public service to terror, to realise that vision. Terrorism may be embedded in and subordinate to insurgency. But terrorism may also exist outside of insurgency, animated by sheer revulsion toward the status quo, without offering or striving for an alternative.

The insurgent activity is designed to weaken government control and legitimacy using guerrilla warfare, terrorism, political mobilisation, propaganda, front and covert party organisations and international activity. Significantly, a common characteristic of insurgent groups is the intent to control a particular area and or population. This objective differentiates insurgents from terrorists, whose objectives do not necessarily include the creation of an alternative governing authority capable of controlling a given area or country. Thus, an insurgency is a contest with the government for support of the people and control over resources and territory.

insurgents exploit and manipulate societal trends and populations through non-violent as well as violent means. They often use propaganda to recruit and promote their cause among potentials. They seek to infiltrate, manipulate, and disrupt discredit government and societal institutions in their effort to gain control. Most insurgent strategies involve attempts to provoke over-reaction by security forces, exacerbate ethnic or sectarian divides, and engender violence.

How did we get here?

It’s an unfortunate but preventable incidence. As we were being told, the late Mohammed Yusuf founded the group around 2001 and 2002.When Boko Haram first started, their actions were non-violent. Their main goal was to purify Islam in northern Nigeria. Things changed after the killing of Yusuf in July 2009.The killing of Yusuf did not escalate the group action; we all know with such religious ideological leaning, definitely the government must intervene. Any discerning person should know that the level of poverty and illiteracy across the north is a time bomb. The leadership of the entire north, both past and present should take the blame.

While many have applauded the army, others feel they have not performed so well in ending it. How will you rate the efforts of the Nigerian Army so far?

Let me answer with a simple illustration. The United States needed only three and a half years to defeat the Axis in World War II. During that war, Germany alone fielded more than 20 million soldiers. So, when U.S. Admiral John Kirby, the spokesperson for the most powerful military force the world has ever known, was asked how long it might take to defeat the modest threat posed by ISIS, he said that it could take five years, six years or even more. It’s well known that fighting insurgencies is challenging. The war against the Taliban started in 1994.

The achievements made so far to weaken these terrorist groups was by United States support. If such assistance were available to Nigeria military, Boko Haram would be a thing of the past within a year.

Regardless, the cowardly attack of Boko Haram in the past four years the military has achieved a lot. When you compare the territory controlled by Boko Haram before 2016 and what they control now, the military has done a tremendous job by taking over more territory from them.

Removal of Service Chiefs would not provide the arms and fighter jets needed. l think the reason why the Chief of Army Staff is selected for attack is probably because he is a professional who doesn't believe he must lobby any political leaders or politicians to retain his position. And, l notice, in Nigeria truth is bitter; insurgency cum terrorism war is a long war. l think the Federal Ministry of Information and National Orientation Agency have a role to play; people must be informed and understand the difference between fighting insurgency and civil war.

There is a general saying that terrorism war is difficult to end. Why is this so?

Insurgencies can be categorised in a number of ways; two of the most common ways are to distinguish insurgencies by their goals or by the primary method they employ. These categories are archetypes, however, and many insurgencies exhibit characteristics combining multiple types, or their goals may evolve during the course of the conflict. In some conflicts, multiple insurgent groups may operate simultaneously, either competing with one another or setting aside the fact that they may have differing views on post-conflict governance to form temporary alliances against the government.

Nevertheless, at the broadest level, the goals of an insurgency most often fall into one of five categories. Revolutionary insurgencies seek to replace the existing political order with an entirely different system, often entailing transformation of the economic and social structures. Reformist insurgencies do not aim to change the existing political order but, instead, seek to compel the government to alter its policies or undertake political, economic, or social reforms. Separatist insurgencies seek independence for a specific region. Resistance insurgencies seek to compel an occupying power to withdraw from a given territory. Commercialist insurgencies are motivated by the acquisition of wealth or material resources; political power is simply a tool for seizing and controlling access to the wealth.

Another way of categorizing insurgency is to focus on their organizational structure and whether the insurgents stress the political or military aspects of their struggle.

Insurgents, of course, may adjust their organization during the course of a conflict. With this background, to defeat Boko Haram, will depend on our military capability, identify the foreign financiers and how well prepared the civil populace are willing to assist the military.

There are clamours for the removal of service chiefs as a way of changing strategy. What is your take on this?

I said it earlier, the service chiefs’ removal would not add arms and weapons needed to defeat Boko. l read it many times, where people talk of fresh ideas.    It seems many people who are asking for service chiefs’ removal do not have full knowledge on how military policies developed, which is bottom-up method. No service chiefs sit alone and develop policies and strategies on military operations.

Lekki Toll Gate shooting became an international discussion that attracted condemnation. What category of people would you blame for the escalation of the protest and its attendant fallout?

I will restrain myself a little on Lekki Toll Gate alleged shooting, but let me make a disclosure. During the ENDSARS protest, l visited both Alausa and Lekki Toll Gate protest centres. Centre for Convention on Democratic Integrity (CCDI) organisation has the consultative status of ECOSOC/United Nations, which make me the permanent representative of the organisation to United Nations. We are permitted to deploy five persons yearly to attend meetings at United Nations, New York, Vienna and Geneva, and we are allowed where necessary to embark on political assignment on behalf of United Nations. l am an affiliate member of Amnesty International, regardless l don't know the Nigeria Office.

The army engagement on the last day of ENDSARS was due to curfew imposed by Gov. Sanwo-Olu, and he made the curfew announcement around 10 a.m. when people had left home for work, and he wanted the curfew to start by 4 p.m., which is not possible, considering the traffic in Lagos state. The governor said he shifted the curfew imposition from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. and he relay it around 6 p.m., when the curfew had commenced. That was a suicidal blunder on the part of Lagos Government. The Lagos State governor is culpable and those who removed the lights at toll gates should be treated as murderers. Like l said, we are working with the United Nations Human Rights Commission. Both the civil society organisations and government officials are being economical with the truth on Lekkigate shooting. For example, if ten military men were at Lekki Toll Gate, each would be there with two magazines and each magazine contains between 20 and 30 bullets; l hope that would give you a clear picture of the narrative going around.

Nigerian economy is seriously on the downward curve. What is the way forward?

I started attending the World Bank & IMF boards of governors’ meetings since 2012 as a returnee. At the Civil Society Forum and meetings with World Bank executive directors l have consistently argued that the bank must engage the people before loans are given. No country that borrows for consumption the way we are doing could survive the economic disgrace as being witnessed now. l raised the alarm and published in many newspapers. Thank God governor El Rufai has joined the crusade. As President Obasanjo, a friend and a father said, l called for a stronger synergy between the federal government and the citizens in addressing the issues affecting the country. With the current insecurity, economic instability, the citizens must be resolute and proactive in addressing the logjam. These challenges are not really new except that they have taken a different dimension.

Are you still advocating for restructuring?

Of course. But l don't want either Biafra or Oodua Republics. l am a federalist. We must go back to the 1960 constitution and where it’s necessary, to amend the constitution. The arrangement whereby states get allocation for what they don't work for negates the ideals of federalism our forefathers agreed upon. Only a few oil producing states and Lagos State are fiscally sustainable; many of the states are parasites and Almajiris.

2023 is here, and both the North and the South are clamouring for the slot. Do you think power should shift to the South?

Ideally, l care not where who rule comes from, but for the sake of equity and self-belonging, l will advise the other tribe, apart from the North and South West produce the next president, possibly South east; l hope they would be serious. During President Obasanjo’s eight years in power, lbo was allotted senate presidency. Within eight years, they produced four senate presidents from four states out of five. You can draw a conclusion from that trend.

Monday, 14 December 2020

Nigeria: A Failed Or Failing Nation- State? By Olufemi Aduwo.

Because of its subjective nature, there is no single,agreed upon definition of the term “failed state” by the non state actors.Much like beauty, “failure” is in the eye of the beholder.However, a state is generally considered to have “failed” when it is no longer able to consistently and legitimately enforce its laws or provide its citizens with basic goods and services. Typical factors contributing to a state’s failure include insurgency, high crime rates,ineffective and impenetrable bureaucracy, corruption,judicial incompetence and military interference in politics.

Basically a failed state, is a state that is unable to perform the two fundamental functions of the sovereign nation-state in the modern world system: it cannot project authority over its territory and peoples, and it cannot protect its national boundaries.The governing capacity of a failed state is attenuated such that it is unable to fulfill the administrative and organisational tasks required to control people and resources and can provide only minimal public services. Its citizens no longer believe that their government is legitimate, and the state becomes illegitimate in the eyes of the international community.


A failed state is composed of feeble and flawed institutions.Often, the executive barely functions, while the legislature, judiciary, bureaucracy, and armed forces have lost their capacity and professional independence.A failed state suffers from crumbling infrastructures, faltering utility supplies and educational and health facilities, and deteriorating basic human-development indicators, such as infant mortality and literacy rates. Failed states create an environment of flourishing corruption and negative growth rates,where honest economic activity cannot flourish.

The dynamics leading to and compounding state failure are many and varied, including civil war, ethnic violence or genocide, and predatory government and bureaucratic behaviour. State failure comes in degrees and is often a function of both the collapse of state institutions and societal collapse.A strong state provides core guarantees to its citizens and others under its jurisdiction in the three interrelated realms of security, economics, and politics.A failed state cannot maintain a monopoly on the legitimate use of violence and minimize internal conflict.

 It cannot formulate or implement public policies to effectively build infrastructure and deliver services or effective and equitable economic policies.In addition, it cannot provide for the representation and political empowerment of its citizens or protect civil liberties and fundamental human rights.Thus, state failure manifests itself when a state can no longer deliver physical security, a productive economic environment, and a stable political system for its people.


The total collapse of the state marks the final, extreme phase of state failure, and very few states can be described as completely failed or collapsed. Yet, research demonstrates that many states suffer from various degrees of weakness and are therefore potential candidates for failure. Weak states were failing with increasing frequency, most of them in Africa but also a handful in Asia and the Middle East, and failed states are known to be hospitable to and to harbour dangerous nonstate actors such as warlords and groups that commit terrorist acts.

 For example, at the end of the 20th century, Somalia descended into state collapse under rival warlords, and Afghanistan, a failed state under the Taliban regime, harboured the terrorist group al-Qaeda. Furthermore,state failure poses pressing humanitarian issues and possible emergency relief and state-building responsibilities for the international community. 

Consequently, understanding the dynamics of state failure and strengthening weak nation-states in the developing world assumed new urgency.Where is Nigeria as a nation- state direction of movement ?

Olufemi Aduwo 
Permanent Representative of Center for Convention on Democratic Integrity (CCDI) to United Nations/ECOSOC 

The D -Day For Electoral College: Here’s What To Expect.By Olufemi Aduwo.

The members of the Electoral College will gather in their respective states on Monday to cast their official ballots for president. Ordinarily, the process is little more than a formal duty to rubber-stamp the results of the November election. For weeks, President Trump and his allies have pressured Republican officials to ignore the popular vote in close-fought states won by President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. and appoint their own electors who would favor Mr.Trump.They have also asked courts to hand victory to the president in states he lost. 

But judges and Republican state lawmakers have shown little appetite for subverting the democratic process, and the electors have remained.As they vote on Monday, Mr. Trump is essentially guaranteed to end the day as he began it: a one-term president. Here’s more on how the voting will work, and on the next steps in the process:

Can I watch the Electoral College vote? 

Yes — most states offer livestreams to watch the proceedings, including crucial battlegrounds won by Mr. Biden. Here are links for four of them: Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Georgia. 
The electors don’t meet in one place or at one time; some start at 10 a.m. Eastern, and most vote in the afternoon. California, the crucial state for Mr. Biden to achieve 270 Electoral College votes, meets at 5 p.m. Eastern.Electors for each state and the District of Columbia meet at a location chosen by the state legislature, most often the state’s capitol. The Delaware electors are meeting in a gym. Nevada is the only state holding its meeting virtually this year. 

How does the Electoral College voting work? 

The electors cast their ballots for president and vice president via paper ballot. Thirty-three states and the District of Columbia legally require their electors to choose whoever won the state’s popular vote, so there should be no surprises there. The other 17 states don’t “bind” their electors, meaning they can vote for whomever they choose. 

The electors were chosen by state parties (if Mr. Biden won a state, for example, the Democrats’ slate of electors casts the votes). Typically, electors are political activists, officials, donors and people with close relationships to the candidates — meaning they are very likely to vote for the candidate they pledged to support. In 2016, seven electors lodged protest votes for someone other than their party’s candidate. But the likelihood of “faithless electors” switching sides and handing the election to Mr. Trump is essentially zero. 

After the electors cast their ballots, the votes are counted and the electors sign certificates showing the results. These are paired with certificates from the governor’s office showing the state’s vote totals. The certificates are sent to Vice President Mike Pence, in his capacity as president of the Senate; the Office of the Federal Register; the secretary of state of the respective state; and the chief judge of the Federal District Court where the electors meet. 

What happens next? 

Congress officially counts the votes in a joint session held in the House chamber on Jan. 6, with Mr. Pence presiding. Mr. Pence opens the certificates — in alphabetical order by state — and presents them to four “tellers,” two from the House and two from the Senate, who count the votes. When Mr. Biden reaches a majority with 270 votes, Mr. Pence announces the result. 

The proceeding is strictly prescribed by federal law, down to where various politicians sit in the chamber. (Mr. Pence gets the speaker’s chair, Speaker Nancy Pelosi sits to his left, and the “tellers” sit at the clerks’ desks.)The session cannot be ended until the count is complete and the result publicly declared. At this point, the election is officially decided. The only remaining task is the inauguration on Jan. 20. 

Which Congress runs the process? Since the new members will be sworn in on Jan. 3, the next Congress will conduct this joint session. Democrats will hold control of the House and Republicans will control the Senate, regardless of the results of the Georgia runoff elections on Jan. 5, because Mr. Pence will still be in office to act as the tiebreaking vote if the chamber is split 50 to 50. 

Can members of Congress block the results? 

There is no debate permitted during the counting of the electoral votes. But after the result is read, members of Congress get one opportunity to lodge their concerns.Any objection to a state’s results must be made in writing and be signed by at least one senator and one member of the House. The two chambers would then separate to debate the objection. Each member of Congress can speak only once — for five minutes — and after two hours the debate is cut off. Each body then votes on whether to reject the state’s results. 

Since the Electoral Count Act was passed in 1887, there have been just two instances of congressional objections, in 1969 and 2005. Neither passed either the House or the Senate. 

What’s the likelihood of Congress changing the outcome? 

Stopping Mr. Biden from assuming office remains a long-shot strategy for Republicans.For an objection to stand, it must pass both houses of Congress by a simple majority. If the vote followed party lines, Republicans could not block Mr. Biden’s victory. Democrats control the House, so an objection would already be doomed there.In the Senate, Democrats would need to pick off only a couple of Republicans to side with them to vote down the objection.A number of Republican senators have declared Mr. Biden the president-elect.With some Trump allies already planning objections, the congressional session is likely to make for good political theater. But the process has little chance of changing the outcome of the election. 

Olufemi Aduwo,is a veteran election observer .He was a member of Nigeria- INEC Election observation Team to United States in 2008 and the only Nigerian accredited by United Kingdom Electoral Commission for 2009 general elections and 2016 referendum.He has served as technical supporting staff to AU and ECOWAS election mission.Currently with Rights Monitoring Group and Centre for Convention on Democratic Integrity (RMG& CCDI ) as the President and CEO respectively.www.ccdiltd.org & www.rightsgroup.org