DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION OF ONLINE VOTING SYSTEM
1.1 BACKGROUND OF STUDY
The advancement made in technology over the past few years has been tremendous. The computer alone has progressed at a remarkable pace, and updates are continually occurring. Along with the progress of the computer comes the transformation of the virtual world. The Internet is a fairly recent concept that has profoundly affected our daily lives. As with anything new, the Internet possesses various mysteries. Research is being conducted to determine the possibilities of an on-line voting. Internet voting opens the door to all sorts of possibilities for our state voting in future.
Therefore, voting is a means of selecting or choosing leaders, it does not apply only to local government, states and federal government of Nigeria but also in different institutions and social organization. The conduct of elections in a democratic society is very important not only because through it a change of government is effected but also because voting is the main form of political participation for most people. For democracy to be sound, it should be anchored on election free from fraud.
Over the years, the voting operation has been put under a manual system of operation which mostly results in inaccuracy and ineffective election. It is gradually being realized that much faster accurate, effective and efficient system is needed to be adopted. Here on-line is to be instituted to handle voting.
The on-line voting system ensures that each intended voter is checked whether he/she is registered or not, if he/she is not registered, the system refuses him voting. Also it checks whether he/she has voted for that particular election. This on-line voting system prevents a situation where a particular candidate seizes the voters’ cards, and uses them to vote for himself. Hence the rigging associated with the manual voting systems has been completely handled. The system also takes care of result calculation of each candidate in particular election and the percentage scored in that election. This eliminates rigging associated with the calculation and counting of votes.
A means of showing the various outputs is also adopted by the system the output can either be displayed on the screen or a hard copy of it can be produced depending on the choice of the user. This prevents interactive and unintentional typographical errors in showing the results of the elections.
With an on-line voting, voters can be cast only once it will also afford people who are sick and unable to go to polling stations to cast their vote to do so. It should be noted however that on-line voting will not replace the existing ballot forms, but is offered as a supplementary way of casting a ballot.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The inefficiency of voting process in Nigeria has resulted in a lot of problems. These problems have continued to obstruct the peace of democracy in Nigeria because the choice of a capable candidate is not encouraged by the current system.
These problems include
i. High rate of rigging during election process
ii. Multiple voters
iii. Inefficient and inaccurate counting of voters by officers concerned.
iv. Long queues observed at polling stations
v. Illegible voters casting their vote
vi. Lost of votes due to either wrong voting or the case of any accident occurring during transportation of the statement of result and other electoral materials to the collection centers.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The main objective of this project work is to design an on-line voting system which among others will be able to achieve the following targets;
(i) Each voter will be able to vote only once for a particular election
(ii) Nobody will have access to the votes before the official opening of the electronic ballot.
(iii) The votes cast cannot be intercepted, modified or diverted.
(iv) The on-line site will resist any attack
(v) Only registered voters will have access to the application
(vi) Voters will be protected against any attempt of identified theft.
(vii) The secrecy of the vote will be guaranteed
(viii) Rigging of the election will be controlled
(ix) The system will not accept vote outside the voting period
(x) It will put to an end the indiscriminate alteration of election result by any officer of the electoral commission of Nigeria state.
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The significance of this study is in the value of implementing the new system. The study will activate democracy and ensure that the popular choice emerges victories in any local government election conducted in Nigeria.
1.5 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study covers voting processes as it is done at the ward councillorship election and local government chairmanship elections. It also inculcates the voters’ personal records, candidates’ personal records and voting procedures.
1.6 DEFINITIONS OF TERMS
Ballot Paper: Material with which voters used to cast their votes.
Ballot Box: A container in which voters drop their votes
Ballot: A vote recorded in an election.
Collation Centre: A designated location where results are collected.
Computer: An electronic device that stores data, processes data and produces an output as information.
Democracy: This is the government of the people for the people and by the people.
Election: The act of choosing by voting one of the candidates for a position.
NSIEC: Nigeria State Independent Electoral Commission
Home Page: The front door to a website. Normally contains links to other sites or pages.
Poll: The process of voting at an election.
Poll Station: A centre or venue where voters cast their votes.
Rigging: To manipulate election result in favour of another person.
Voter’s Card: This is a card given to a voter to ascertain that he has the right to vote.
Votes’ Register: This is a register containing the data of eligible voters completed by the election officials.DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION OF ONLINE VOTING SYSTEM