pvcLAGOS (LAGOS STATE) – The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), is considering the distribution of Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) at polling units to enable all eligible voters to participate in elections in February.
Mr Akin Orebiyii, Lagos State Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), made the thinking known to newsmen after meeting with the State Council of Obas and Chiefs in Ikeja.
Orebiyii said that over 1.7 million PVCs of eligible voters, who registered in 2011, were yet to be claimed by their owners since the distribution began.
“We have received four million cards and about 2.3 million people have come out to collect their cards while 1.7 million have not been collected.
“We are still expecting 600,000 cards from 2011 registration and for 2014; we have outstanding of about 1.4 million, totaling about 5.9 million registered voters.
“Shortly, these outstanding cards will arrive and we will add them to the ones we are distributing.
“We are also thinking of moving, if possible, away from the 245 Collation Centres to the 8,465 Polling Units so as to reach more people.
“We believe people will come out as we move from local government to the wards and from the wards to the polling units’’, the REC said.
Orebiyii said that the response of eligible voters toward collection of cards had not been encouraging, stressing that the development necessitated the further decentralisation of the exercise.
According to him, the monarchs assured the commission of their support toward ensuring free, fair and credible elections in the state.
Orebiyii urged the monarchs to mobilise their subjects to collect their PVCs and conduct themselves peacefully during the polls.
“We expect our royal fathers and chiefs to mobilise and galvanise our people to collect their voter cards and to encourage our people to vote according to their conscience.
“They should tell them not to sell their votes. They should advise them to be orderly and avoid violence in their attitude before, during and after the elections’’, he said.