INEC directs officials to continue voter registration ‘pending further directives’

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says it has directed its officials to continue voter registration “pending further directives”.

Mahmood Yakubu, INEC chairman, had, on Saturday, said the continuous voter registration (CVR) exercise will not end on June 30 as earlier scheduled.

Also, a federal high court in Abuja stopped INEC from ending the exercise on June 30, following a suit filed against the electoral umpire by the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) and 185 Nigerians.

The commission, in a statement issued on Thursday by Festus Okoye, its national commissioner, information and voter education, said it met and deliberated on a number of issues, including the CVR exercise, the issuance of certified true copies (CTCs) of documents and the commencement of the uploading of personal particulars of candidates.

According to the statement, the CVR process will continue nationwide and “all the Resident Electoral Commissioners and Electoral Officers have been directed to continue with the exercise pending further directives from the Commission”.

“The Commission has consistently reiterated its resolve to continue to provide electoral services to the Nigerian people and register all eligible Nigerians that are interested in registering. The Commission has yet again deployed additional machines to areas of pressure and will continue to serve the people of Nigeria,” the statement reads.

On the court case regarding CVR, the commission said based on its request, the court “granted an accelerated hearing and adjourned the matter to Monday 4th July 2022 for hearing of the substantive matter”, adding that an update will be provided “after court hearing next week”.

On applications for CTCs, the commission said “so far, 186 requests for CTCs, some running into hundreds of pages, have been processed”.

“The Commission is working round the clock, including weekends, to attend to all such requests. We wish to assure political parties, aspirants, candidates, and all applicants for CTCs of documents that their applications will be treated expeditiously and will be issued in earnest,” INEC added.