The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, says it has commenced investigation into reports of Permanent Voters Cards, PVCs, buried underground in some locations, including the compound of a high-profile person.
The commission, in a statement by its
National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, warned that it is not taking these allegations lightly, and anyone found culpable in this diabolical scheme clearly intended to disenfranchise Nigerians will be sanctioned under the law.
Recall that videos of Permanent Voters Cards, PVCs, allegedly buried underground in some locations were circulated online, prompting a response from the electoral umpire.
INEC warned that it will not allow retrogressive elements to sabotage its efforts, stressing that every eligible Nigerian who registered as a voter is entitled to his/her PVC, and that the constitutional right to vote in any election must never be suppressed or abridged in any way.
It said “As far as the record of the Commission is concerned, PVCs have been printed for all valid registrants in Nigeria up to 14th January 2022 and delivered to all the States of the Federation for collection by voters. We will not allow retrogressive elements to sabotage our efforts.
“The issues of voter registration, compilation of the voters’ roll and issuance of PVCs are at the heart of any democratic elections and the Commission is working hard to ensure that every eligible citizen who appears in person at the registration venue is registered. We assure Nigerians that this matter will be pursued to its logical conclusion.”
According to the statement, the commission is already reviewing the procedure for collecting PVCs to make it less cumbersome and more transparent, stating that “This will be a major topic at the next regular quarterly meeting with stakeholders so that working together we can find a lasting solution to the issue.”
The commission appealed to those who found the allegedly buried PVCs to deliver them to its nearest State or Local Government office as a patriotic contribution to the consolidation of the electoral process.