By Gift Olivia Samuel The Sight News
ABUJA: Ahead of the November 6, 2021 Anambra Governorship election, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), on Friday said it will not print new Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) for persons who have been involved in multiple registrations.
This is just as the Commission reiterated, that double or multiple registrations are invalid by law.
The INEC Chairman Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, who made this known at an emergency meeting of Political Parties and the Commission, noted that as testimony to the effectiveness of the new system for checking double and multiple registrations, the Commission found out that some 62,698 persons who are already registered voters in Anambra State went ahead to register again.
He explained that the Commission has archived these registrations and will not print new PVCs for them, adding that their old PVCs remain valid and they can use them to vote at the Polling Units where they registered and probably voted in previous elections.
Yakubu further said that the same cleaning up exercise is going on nationwide, and as soon as it is over, the Commission will provide further details to Nigerians on the situation in other States of the Federation and action to be taken on the matter.
“Let me remind all Nigerians that the law prohibits double registration. The Commission appreciates the fact that the deployment of technology, including the online pre-registration, has simplified the process and made voter registration in Nigeria easier. However, the same technology has also made it easier for us to detect multiple registrations”, he said.
Furthermore, the INEC Chairman put the number of valid registrants in Anambra State at the end of the First Quarter of the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) exercise on 5th September 2021 at 77,475.
This figure, he noted, has been added to the existing register of 2,447,996 eligible voters used for the 2019 General Election, adding accordingly, that the number of registered voters in Anambra State now stands at 2,525,471.
While noting that INEC is presently working on the printing of the PVCs, he pointed out that the Commission will use various channels, including e-mails and text messages, to contact the new voters to collect their PVCs before the election.
On the issue of security in the state, he appealed to all political parties and candidates not to exacerbate the feeling of insecurity in Anambra State through unguarded utterances and actions, which he said, could compound the security situation and make the work of the Commission, political parties and security agencies even more difficult, and may also lead to voter apathy.
“This moment calls for statesmanship and maturity hence the decision to convene this emergency meeting”, he said.