It is the manner of appointment – not the duration of tenure as mentioned by the court – that holds the key to greater transparency. Appointments that have wider non-executive endorsement, for instance, could serve this pivotal institution well, even better.
A judicious blend of executive, legislative and judicial approval – rather than the current format of presidential (read: executive) endorsement – would go a distance to remove any impression of lack of transparency or bias the court has mentioned being the case over decades under different dispensations.
Where the Supreme Court observation has conflated matters may be in its stern remarks regarding ‘truncated tenures’ being the source of alleged manipulation.
That it finds the ‘situation on the ground [to be] alarming’ sounds rather extravagant, considering the court is hearing petitions recommending reforms in the process of appointment of EC members, included, not US-style charges of ‘electoral appropriation’. Also, the supposed ‘shortness’ of tenure of EC members bears little weight on institutional independence. Appointments start for EC, some of whom graduate as CEC, not a brief period of time by any measure.
As for the court’s wish to have a CEC ‘like