The House of Representatives has asked the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to extend the voter registration exercise by 60 days.
The house gave the directive following the adoption of a motion moved by Ben Kalu (APC, Abia) during plenary on Wednesday.
June 30 is the scheduled deadline for the closing of the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) exercise.
What the Rep is saying
While moving the motion, Mr Kalu said the extension will enable more eligible Nigerians to register.
- Mr Kalu noted that the decision to extend the voters’ registration was in line with the provisions of the Electoral Act, 2022, which required INEC to suspend voters’ registration at least 60 days before an election.
- However, In April, INEC made a declaration that 42% of the voter registrations recorded since the commencement of CVR in June 28, 2021, were invalid with about 20 million unclaimed Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs).
- Mr Kalu said the crowd seen at various centres showed the number of unregistered eligible voters who are willing to be registered.
- He also expressed concern about the reports of shortages of voter registration machines, inadequate manpower and personnel at registration centres.
- Speaking further, he said if the issue of shortage of voter registration equipment and registration deadline is not addressed, millions of Nigerians would be disenfranchised thereby jeopardising the integrity of the 2023 general elections.
- He urged INEC to deploy additional 30 voter registration machines in each local government area and also train and deploy ad-hoc staff to solve the issue of shortage of manpower at registration centres.
- Consequently, the House mandated the Committee on Electoral Matters to engage INEC in order to examine and proffer solutions to the shortage of registration machines and manpower.
- The House also directed the Committee to liaise with INEC on the extension.
What you should know
Following the conclusion of party primaries, there has been more turn out in the number of Nigerians trooping to registration centres.