Some residents won’t get voter cards, says INEC

By IAfrica
In Nigeria
Aug 14th, 2014
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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said many registered voters in Oyo State will not get their Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) as distribution begins tomorrow.

Registered voters in Afijio, Ibadan North East, Ibadan South West and Ogbomoso North local governments would be affected. Oyo State has 33 local government areas.

The Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Alhaji Nasir Ayilara, spoke at a stakeholders’ meeting on the commission’s preparedness for the distribution of PVCs and Continuous Voter Registration (CVR).

He said PVCs were ready for only 89.6 per cent of units where registration took place in 2011.

Ayilara said: “In 2011, voter registration took place in 4,783 polling units, but only 4,286 units, representing 89.6 per cent, have printed PVCs. The remaining 497 units will have fresh voter registration during the CVR.

“Among those affected by this incident are some prominent citizens and residents, including serving and former state functionaries. The affected 497 polling units are spread across 20 local government areas. The most affected local governments are Afijio, Ibadan North East, Ibadan South West and Ogbomoso North.

“In Ibadan North East, 174 of the 279 units are affected. In Afijio, 77 polling units are affected and in Ibadan Southwest, 123 of 389 units are affected.”

He said subsequent elections would be conducted using the card reader. Ayilara said the PVC has features, such as smart card-based voter ID, voter information and security features to prevent counterfeiting.

Urging residents to collect their PVCs, he said: “The only power we have is that card. We should encourage our people to exchange their temporary cards with permanent ones. I appeal to those whose data were lost during the last exercise to come out as they did in 2011.”

The state government has declared tomorrow a holiday to enable residents collect their PVCs.

Governor Abiola Ajimobi urged residents to come out en masse for the exercise.

In a statement by his Media Aide, Dr. Festus Adedayo, Ajimobi said collection of the PVC would enable residents to choose their leaders at the 2015 general elections.

He said: “It is important for the people, particularly those who earlier registered and obtained the temporary voter cards, to collect the permanent ones. Experience from elections held in some states has shown the dangers inherent in failing to collect PVCs. Such uncollected cards may fall into the hands of desperate politicians, who are bent on winning elections through the back door. We should, therefore, ensure that we collect the cards to prevent election rigging and manipulation.”

The governor warned the people against selling their voter cards.

Those yet to register would  have the opportunity to do so from August 20.

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