…REC seeks stakeholders’ efforts for collection
By Marie-Therese Nanlong
Ahead of the 2023 general elections, the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC on Monday delivered another batch of PVCs totaling 362, 465 which belong to newly registered voters as well as cases of transfers and replacements in Plateau State for onward distribution to the owners from the 12th December 2022.
The Commission had earlier delivered four trailer loads of non-sensitive materials to the State office, as the State is set to before the end of the week also receive its share of BVAS which is now the most critical component of the elections.
The State Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, Oliver Agundu who disclosed these to journalists in Jos stated politicians should intensify efforts to campaign for votes in line with the electoral acts as he has no influence whatsoever on the outcome of the elections.
Agundu promised transparency and fairness to all political parties and urged citizens to ensure they come out en masse to collect their PVCs.
His words, “… Ours is an institution whose key operational principles revolves around openness, transparency, integrity, credibility, and fairness which can only be engender by inaccessibility to relevant operational information and our readiness at all times to keep the public abreast with our activities and plans which can only be made possible by the media.
“Our meeting today is to inform you formally of my assumption of duty as the new Resident Electoral Commissioner of Plateau State and humbly solicit your support and partnership so that I can deliver on the core mandate of my job. This humble request is imperative because of the unpredictable implications of fake news and false reportage in our increasingly volatile environment and the increasing tendency towards mutual suspicion…
“I have enlisted the commitment of all staff of the Commission here in Plateau State to my vision and mission of anchoring the most transparent and credible election in the history of the State. Be informed that two weeks ago we took delivery of four Trailer loads of Non – Sensitive materials… we have just concluded the preliminary display of the Voters Registers for complaints and objections to enable the Commission to clean up the Register as we anticipate having a credible and dependable Register for Next year’s general elections.
“At the moment such complaints and objections have been received and compiled for onward transmission to the National Headquarters for the commencement of the clean-up exercise Let me be clear that the Commission is committed to purge the Voters Register of the under aged, illegal immigrants and all categories of persons not constitutionally permitted by our laws to vote and be voted for.”
He added, “The response of the public towards the collection of PVCs is generally very poor. But with our renewed commitment to advocacy and campaigns in this regard, there is a remarkable improvement. However, more efforts need to be done in this regard so that people can come forward and collect their PVCs and get ready for voting the candidates of their choice come next year.
“We, therefore, call on all of you to help amplify the importance of PVC collection by redoubling your efforts in creating awareness and sensitization in this regard for obvious reasons, we have just taken delivery of another batch of PVCs totaling Three hundred and sixty two thousand, four hundred and sixty-five (362, 465) of those that registered newly this year as well as cases of transfers and replacements.
“There shabe by nationwide commencement of PVCs collection on Monday 12th December 2022 to Monday, 23rd January 2023 at the headquarters of the 774 local government Areas. The Commission has also announced that PVCs collections will be devolved to 8,809 Registrations Areas/Wards from Friday 6th to Sunday 15th January 2023. I hereby invite you once again to help us create awareness in this regard especially here in Plateau State
“Before the end of the week, we shall be receiving the Plateau share of BVAS which is now the most critical component of our electoral system. Let me also bring to your notice that there is no going back on the use of BVAS for the 2023 general election. Candidates should not deceive themselves but concentrate their energy on campaigns, within the provisions of the electoral act to canvass for votes, as everything will be transparent and in fairness to all parties…”