The Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room (Situation Room), has urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to ensure digital display of voters’ register, in line with the Electoral Act, 2022.
Ms Ene Obi, the Convener of the Situation Room, a Coalition of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) said this in a statement in Abuja on Monday.
According to Obi, the Situation Room noted that the manner which INEC displayed register of voters for public scrutiny didn’t fully conform to the provisions of the Electoral Act, 2022.
“Situation Room wishes to restate the provision in Section 19(1) of the Electoral Act, 2022, that the voters’ register shall be displayed or published for public scrutiny at every registration area and on its official website or any website established by the commission for that purpose.
“To make the process seamless for citizens, it was expected that the commission, in line with its current stance on the use of technology in elections, will also digitise the process as mandated by the new act.
“Thus, we are demanding that INEC comply with this provision by displaying the register at the Registration Area/Ward level and on its website for seven days.
“This has to be done before the Commission commences printing of Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) for new registrants,’’ she said.
Obi, however, said that INEC had displayed voters’ register in its local government area offices nationwide for seven days from Aug. 15 to Aug. 21 for Nigerians to make claims and objections.
She added that this was a vital aspect of the election process that promote credibility of the voters’ register.
She said this was because citizens would be able to raise objections with respect to names of persons included on the register who were not qualified to be registered as voters in their areas.
She added that citizens could also check names of persons who were deceased or whose name had been omitted.
“As we head into the elections, we urge the electoral body to carry out its responsibilities in line with the provisions of the Electoral Act, 2022,’’she said.