John Howell (Henley) (Con)
The Minister will be as aware as I am that the Nigerian elections have come in for considerable criticism. Does she still think that they play a role in achieving a democratic Commonwealth?
My hon. Friend would be wise to read the Government's remarks about the elections in Nigeria. In those remarks, we reflected on some of the points that observers drew to our attention. He is right that the Commonwealth and the secretariat play an important role in Nigeria and elsewhere in providing expertise to election observation missions. Reports on those missions can reflect points that are made and conclusions that are drawn. Commonwealth members and others can learn from those reports—in all our member states, democracy is in the process of continuously improving—to inform future elections.