Home Politics Nearly 45 percent of completed registrations nationwide are invalid, says INEC

Nearly 45 percent of completed registrations nationwide are invalid, says INEC


By Princess-Ekwi Ajide – Abuja

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has expressed worries over the persistent invalid registrations despite repeated warnings by the Commission.

The Chairman of INEC, Professor Mahmood Yakubu said in a press briefing in Abuja that many registrants, either out of ignorance or belief that their systems will not detect the infraction, register twice thereby invalidating their registration.

He added that there are also registrants whose data are incomplete and did not meet the Commission’s Business Rules for inclusion in the register saying that both categories i.e. the failure of ABIS and incomplete data constitute invalid registrations.

According to the Chairman, presently, nearly 45% of completed registrations nationwide are invalid, rising to as high as 60% or more in some States and this infraction happened in all States of the Federation as no State is immune from it.

Professor Yakubu, noted, that invalid registrations will not be included in the Register of Voters and in their commitment to transparency, the distribution of the registration figures, including the percentages of valid and invalid registrations on State-by-State basis, have been uploaded to the Commission’s website and social media platforms.

He described the development as worrisome because of the time and resources expended in handling the cases saying that it is even more disturbing that there are strong indications that some INEC staff may be complicit in facilitating the infractions, notwithstanding stern warnings.

The Chairman said, the Commission is reviewing reports on such staff and has commenced a detailed investigation which may include the prosecution of those found culpable and specific registrants associated with the infractions by INEC staff may also face prosecution in line with Sections 22 and 23 of the Electoral Act 2022.

He reminded that in restarting the Continuous Voter, Registeration, CVR, the Commission introduced the online pre-registration system as part of its determination to continue to improve the electoral process and ensure that Nigerian voters have the best of voting experience.

Professor Yakubu, noted that while the number of new registrants is impressive and demonstrates the eagerness of Nigerians to vote in the forthcoming elections, the Commission has a duty to clean up the data to ensure that only eligible Nigerians are registered and this brought to the fore, the persistent invalid registrations.

He promised that the Commission will continue to clean up the register to eliminate invalid registration and ensure that only those who should be in the Register of Voters are included saying that after completing the data clean up, the Commission has printed 1,390,519 PVCs for genuine new registrants, 464,340 PVCs for verified applicants for transfer or replacement of cards have also been printed which makes it a total of 1,854,859 PVCs ready for collection at INEC State offices across the country after the Easter holiday.

The Chairman reiterated that dates for all activities in the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the 2023 General Election, including the conduct of party primaries, are firm and fixed saying that already, ten political parties have served notices to the Commission for the conduct of their primaries.

He reminded that 3rd June, 2022 remains the last day for the conduct of primaries and admonished political parties to adhere strictly to all dates in the Timetable, including the nomination of their candidates via the INEC web portal cautioning that such nominated candidates must emerge from valid primaries as provided in Section 84 of the Electoral Act 2022.


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