The printing of permanent voter cards (PVC) for new registrants has been delayed, according to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), due to the cleaning up of the voters’ registry.
INEC Chairman Mahmood Yakubu announced this at a five-day induction retreat for national commissioners in Lagos.
The voters’ registry is cleaned to remove the names of deceased people, non-Nigerians who may have been enrolled, and other categories of ineligible people.
The INEC chairman stated that the commission is heartened by residents’ responses to the current continuous voter registration (CVR) drive and that he is aware of the PVC printing delay.
“Millions of Nigerians have registered so far and we have been giving weekly updates of the progress of the exercise for the last nine months,”
“The commission is aware that new registrants, as well as those who applied for transfer or replacement of the PVC, will like to know when the cards will be available for collection”.
“The reason why we have not made the PVCs available is because of the robust system of cleaning up the registration to ensure that only genuine registrants are added to the voters’ register using the automatic bimodal identification system (ABIS) for fingerprint and facial clean-up.”
The chairman said INEC had completed the ABIS for the first and second quarter of the CVR exercise, adding that the commission would meet next week after which details of PVC collection would be announced.
He reassured Nigerians of INEC’s commitment to credible polls in 2023, adding that the commission had concluded work on the strategic plan for the 2023 general election.
Yakubu also stated that INEC will complete work on election laws and guidelines while keeping the contents of the Electoral Act 2022 in mind.
“In April, the three documents will be released and presented to the public,” he stated.
“I would also want to use this opportunity to inform Nigerians that we have discovered the issues related to the bimodal voter accreditation system (BVAS) during voter accreditation.”
“Following the successful extension of voter access to polling units, the commission is also working on the allocation of voters to voting units around the nation.”
“We will carry out the strategy for obtaining a fairer allocation of voters to polling stations very soon.”