.Only INEC’s fairness can save 2023 elections

…to deploy 200,000 BVAS for 2023 polls

•Says no carting away of enrolment device in Lagos

By Vincent Ujumadu, Olayinka Ajayi & Steve Oko

The Independent Electoral Commission, INEC, has said voters registration ahead of the 2023 elections ends today.

The announcement came as potential voters engaged in last-minute rush for registration yesterday.

Our reporter who visited the INEC Headquarters in Lagos State saw a crowd of residents waiting to be registered.

INEC Public Relations Officer, Mr. Nike Oriowo, said all those who showed up would be attended to even it meant working till very late.

In a statement, the State Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, Mr. Olusegun Agbaje ,said ,”The exercise which commenced on June 28, 2021 will end on Sunday July 31 2022″.

The  Commission, also yesterday, debunked the claim of miscreants carting away INEC Voter Enrollment Devices, IVEDs, in Surulere part of Lagos State.

The REC, Mr. Olusegun Agbaje, who visited the area, stated: “The false video posted by one Amb. Princess Okogie Idimudia alleging that hoodlums invaded one St. Bridgette Catholic Church, Surulere Lagos State and carried away registration machines meant to register voters at the church on July 29, 2022 was a needless distraction.

“The office has investigated and found that it is not true as no INEC Voter Enrolment Devices machine was deployed to the said church on July 29, 2022.

“For avoidance of doubt, the Commission does not use worship centres, premises for registration and all the IEVDs deployed to different Voters Registration Centres across Lagos State are intact.”

Also, yesterday, INEC said it would deploy over 200,000 Bimodal Voter Accreditation System, BVAS, for the 2023 elections.

INEC National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Mr Festus Okoye, disclosed this while addressing newsmen in Umuahia, Abia State capital.

Okoye was in Abia to monitor the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR).

He said that the BVAS would be deployed in the 176,000 polling units across the country, adding that the surplus will be kept handy as reserve.

Okoye also spoke to journalists at the Anambra State headquarters of INEC, yesterday, saying there was no way the exercise would not come to an end as the Commission is also involved in other activities ahead of the general elections.

He said: “You are fully aware that 30th of June, 2022 was the terminal date for the CVR, but the commission extended the date to 31st July, 2023, a period of one month.

“The CVR cannot go on ad infinitum. It has to be terminated at a certain point in time and so, the commission has decided to terminate it tomorrow ( today), 31st of July.

“This is to enable us have the time to clean up the double and multiple registrations. We have to do this before the 2023 elections so as to have a clean voters register”.


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