Atiku, Tinubu, Obi to fight for 84m votes

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Ahead of commencement of campaigns on September 28 and the 2023 general election, Abubakar Atiku, Bola Tinubu, Peter Obi of the All Progressives Congress (APC), the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the Labour Party respectively and other presidential candidates would fight for 84 million votes across the 8,809 wards.

This is as the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) pledged to publish a comprehensive list of registered voters soon.

INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, said this at the stakeholders’ validation meeting for the 2022 revised framework and regulations for voting by Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Abuja yesterday. He said the list would integrate the fresh voters registered at the just concluded Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) to the existing register of over 84 million voters.

He faulted claim by a section of the civil society groups that INEC was not willing to display the register.

“At a media briefing yesterday, the commission was accused of failure to display the voters’ register as provided by Section 19(1) of the Electoral Act 2022. This claim is incorrect.

“What the commission displayed for claims and objections in our local government area offices nationwide for a period of one week, from August 15-21 was not the entire register of voters. It was the list of fresh registrants at the end of the fourth and last quarter of the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) exercise covering the period from April 11 to July 31. This has been the practice for several years.”

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Yakubu said the commission had displayed the register three times: from September 24-30, 2021, December 24-30, 2021 and March 26 – April 1 2022. He said a comprehensive schedule of the CVR and the display of the register was shared with stakeholders at the commission’s quarterly meeting before the inception of the exercise in June 2021.

“We wish to assure Nigerians that the commission will display the comprehensive register in all the 8,809 wards and 774 local government areas/area councils nationwide as envisaged in Section 19(1) of the Electoral Act, 2022.

“This will integrate fresh voters registered under the last CVR to the existing register of over 84 million voters. The date will be announced as soon the commission completes the ongoing Automated Biometric Identification System (ABIS) to weed out all double/multiple as well as ineligible registrants. We appeal to some of our friends in civil society organisations to be guided accordingly,” Yakubu said.

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