Nigerians are now serious about registering and collecting their PVCs ahead 2023 general elections. Some are getting the permanent voters card to exercise their enfranchise while others are forced to collect it owing to directives from their organizations and the notion – “No PVC, No salary.”
Business Standards’ visit to the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC), head office in Ilorin, Kwara State discovered that many people; especially youth are yet to get their PVCs.
People in their hundred were on queue at the main gate and inside a Hall within the premises and it was observed the officials of the agency are busy attending to the people on different purposes.
A female officer, who refused to grant interview managed to reveal that they are confronted with challenges of many people on ground and unable to satisfy them at once.
She says: “we are only registering people today. As you can see, they are many and we are trying our best to ensure that they all get done what they are here for. Nigerians don’t don’t do things early but they will be rushing when a program is about to close.”
Some of the citizens who spoke to Business Standards lamented slow pace of service, discrimination and lack of care for people to register.
Micheal Adeniran, complained that, “I have been here since morning and till now I don’t know fate. Security agencies at the gate are collecting money before they allow people in. We are inside now but the service is very poor. Some people have gone because of how the situation is. They just have to improve on it.”
Another respondent who pleaded anonymity equally complained that, “we have been delayed. Some people who just came have done their registration and gone maybe they know officers here. The situation is not impressive at all. Nigeria itself is not working well so it applies to all forms of our lives. Bribery and corruption everywhere.”
Binta James, a female who wanted to register for the first time said, “the network is okay. Within Five minutes; you are done but the workers are for eye service. I am 18 years old and I want to get the card for me to be able to vote in the coming election.”
Another female explained that the needed another PVC because she lost the first one given to her. She also complained and advised that the agency should step up strategies in serving people so as not to get fraustrated.
Meanwhile, Attahiru Madami, Resident Electoral Commissioner in Kwara State said about two million plus registered for PVCs and it was discovered in the system that they registered twice and more.
Madami explained that there have been some infractions on the part of the recently registered voters, warning politicians to desist from using voters to commit electoral fraud as INEC has put in place technological devices to prevent all forms of electoral malpractice
While advising Nigerians to protect their permanent voter cards as it is their power to select credible leaders, Madami declared that the commission will follow strictly the new electoral law signed by President Muhammadu Buhari.