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We’ve 108 fresh applications for party registration — INEC

To display names of newly registered voters

LAGOS—The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, said, yesterday, it has so far received at least 108 fresh applications from associations seeking registration as political parties.

Chairman of commission, Prof. Mahmoud Yakub, made the disclosure in Lagos, yesterday, while speaking on “Citizen, Government and Technology” at a session of the ongoing Lagos Social Media Week.



In December, the commission registered 21 new parties, bringing the number of registered parties to 68. Yakub, who addressed the session via a video call, said the fresh applications were being processed by the commission.

He said:  “As of Friday, we received no fewer than 108 fresh applications from political associations seeking to be registered as political parties. We have begun the processing and scrutiny of the applications and we will register those that meet the eligibility criteria.”

Yakub said the commission would continue to register political associations as parties so long as they met the set guidelines.

He, however, said political associations, which sought registration six months before the general election would be barred from the polls.

Yakub said the commission decided to take the step to ensure that parties had enough time to prepare for elections, adding that the commission was glad that of the 21 parties registered recently, four were driven by women.

Display of newly registered voters

The INEC boss also said the commission would from March 26 to 31, display names of newly registered voters and urged the public to report noticed cases of underage registration.

He said the display of the register would allow registered voters check and correct their details before the printing of their Permanent Voter Cards, PVCs.

“The display and hearing of claims and objections would begin on March 26 to end on March 31. I advised the public to take note of these dates by going to their registration centres to check for any form of mistakes in their data before the printing of the PVCs,“ he said.

Yakub urged the public to support the electoral body by putting forward their observations during the display and hearing of claims and objections, so that appropriate action could be taken.

“Investigation into the alleged incidence of underage registration and voting is ongoing, and we promise Nigerians that the matter will be fully investigated, “ he added.

In his remarks, the United States Consul General in Lagos, John Bray, urged Nigerians to adopt the concept of ‘self policing’ in the use of the social media, especially as the political year was around the corner.

“The U.S. Government is excited about the growth of social media in Nigeria. It is a market place of ideas and a powerful tool to put out ideas.

“Every citizen now has free access to democratic ideas, but when you see bad ideas, use the social media to counter such ideas; just like we have in ‘Balanced Journalism’, to get out a balanced truth,” Mr. Bray said.



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