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One million Nigerians added to voter register as INEC suspends CVR

By Sodiq Omolaoye (Abuja) and Kehinde Olatunji (Lagos)
21 September 2021   |   3:04 am
Over one million Nigerians have been added to the nation’s voter register, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said.

Hon. Chairman INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu

Over one million Nigerians have been added to the nation’s voter register, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said.

The number of fresh online pre-registrants is 3,165,189 while 1,457,766 have applied for voter transfer, replacement of Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVCs) and update of information records.

National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, disclosed this in a statement announcing the end of the first quarter of the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR).

He said youths between the ages of 18 and 34 constituted the majority, with 771,770 (71.33 per cent) having completed registration.

In terms of occupation, students formed the largest category with 439,608 (40.63 per cent). In gender distribution, 555,872 (51.38 per cent) were male and 526,075 (48.62 per cent) female.

He said the second quarter of the exercise would begin October 4, 2021, and end December 20, 2021.

He said: “As provided by Section 19 (1) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended), the Commission is mandated to publish the register of voters for a period of not less than five days and not more than 14 days for public scrutiny during which citizens may make claims and objections.

“In compliance with the law, the register of new voters will be displayed in the local government offices of the Commission nationwide from September 24 to 30, 2021.

“The aim is to enable citizens to assist the Commission by identifying ineligible registrants on the list ahead of the cleaning up of the register before adding the fresh registrants to the current register and printing their PVCs for future elections.”

Okoye observed that ineligible registrants included foreigners and Nigerians below the age of 18. He also urged people to help the Commission identify multiple registrants and deceased persons so that they can be removed from the register.

Also, INEC placed a suspension on online pre-registration and in-person voter registrations across Lagos State.

It said the suspension was to give room for all registrants to check the appropriateness of information supplied. It said the stoppage would afford its officials the opportunity to embark on necessary housekeeping activities in preparation for the next quarter.

In a statement, yesterday, by its Head of Department, Voter Education/Publicity for Lagos, Femi Akinbiyi, INEC said online pre-registration and in-person registration exercise started on June 28, 2021, and July 26, 2021.

It said the break is also to allow voters and Nigerians to raise objections (if any) about names that are not supposed to be on the register, such as dead persons, foreigners, and Nigerians below the age of 18.

“Names of registrants will be displayed for the public at the local government INEC offices in all the 20 local government areas of the state throughout the days earmarked for the exercise,” INEC said.

The statement reads in part: “INEC in Lagos State will, as from Tuesday, September 21, 2021, suspend the online pre-registration of voters that started on June 28, 2021, and in-person registration that commenced on July 26, 2021, and thereafter embark on the display of voter register for claims and objections.

“The exercise based on the approved timelines and schedule will start September 24 and end September 30, 2021. The temporary CVR stoppage is to give room for all registrants to check for appropriateness or otherwise of their information supplied during the registration.”