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HomeLatest newsUtomi advocates voting without PVCs, INEC kicks

Utomi advocates voting without PVCs, INEC kicks



Prof Pat Utomi

The Independent National Electoral Commission has been asked to permit registered voters to cast their votes without using permanent voter cards due to the poor collection rate of PVCs nationwide with less than 100 days to the 2023 elections.

A political economist and management specialist, Pat Utomi, on Thursday, stated this during a PVC collection advocacy walk to the INEC headquarters in Abuja.

Utomi said since the commission had adopted biometric voting, eligible voters only needed to go to the polling units and get scanned to cast their ballots.

The political analyst, who claimed that about 9.3 million uncollected PVCs were still in INEC offices, described the situation as a national emergency that needed urgent attention.

Speaking on behalf of the organiser of the event, The Big Tent, Utomi said, “Secondly, we want them to understand that the process that they have embarked on is a biometric process. In fact, one does not need PVC to vote because one has been captured already. One’s biometrics is in the system. If one shows up on Election Day without any PVC and one’s finger print and face are scanned, one should be able to say that he or she is registered.

“We say it is the duty of INEC to do everything possible to decentralise the collection of PVCs and ensure that everybody who is registered gets their PVCs. We think it is not acceptable for Nigerians to be disenfranchised. If INEC needs help to make sure that the PVCs get to their rightful owners, we are ready to volunteer.”

Receiving the letter of demands from the group on behalf of the commission, the Assistant Chief Administrative Officer, Kelechi Maduneme, advised voters to get their PVCs, saying it is a herculean task for the commission to carry out PVC distribution.

Responding, the Chief Press Secretary to the INEC Chairman, Rotimi Oyekanmi, noted in an interview with our correspondent on Thursday that voting through PVCs is backed by law.

He explained partly, “The procedure for accreditation and voting in an election is captured under Sections 47(1), (2), and (3) of the Election Act 2022.

“Therefore, there is no way that a voter can be allowed to vote without his or her PVC. There are no two ways about it.”

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