Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has vowed to legally sanction those behind the destruction of Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) targeted at disenfranchising electorate.
It warned that it was not taking lightly the allegations in trending videos of PVCs allegedly buried underground in some locations, including the compound of a high-profile person..
The commission, in a statement by National Commissioner and Chairman Information and Voter Education Committee Chairman, Festus Okoye, warned that it would not allow retrogressive elements to sabotage its efforts.
“The commission is not taking these allegations lightly. We have commenced immediate investigation and anyone found culpable in this diabolical scheme clearly intended to disenfranchise Nigerians will be sanctioned under the law. Every eligible Nigerian who registered as a voter is entitled to his/her PVC. The constitutional right to vote in any election must never be suppressed or abridged in any way.
“As far as the record of the commission is concerned, PVCs have been printed for all valid registrants in Nigeria up to January 14, 2022 and delivered to all the states of the federation for collection by voters. We will not allow retrogressive elements to sabotage our efforts.
“The issues of voter registration, compilation of the voters’ roll and issuance of PVCs are at the heart of any democratic elections and the commission is working hard to ensure that every eligible citizen who appears in person at the registration venue is registered. We assure Nigerians that this matter will be pursued to its logical conclusion,” the commission assured.
In its message of hope, INEC noted that: “Already, the commission is reviewing the procedure for collecting PVCs to make it less cumbersome and more transparent. This will be a major topic at the next regular quarterly meeting with stakeholders so that working together we can find a lasting solution to the issue.”