INEC may suspend CVR in July — Official

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Friday said it might suspend the ongoing nationwide Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) exercise in July.

The Chief Press Secretary to the INEC chairman, Mr. Rotimi Oyekanmi, disclosed this while speaking with newsmen on the sideline of the ongoing two-day Editorial Capacity Building Workshop for INEC Public Affairs Officers, held in Lagos.

Oyekanmi noted that the suspension might be attributed to the fact that most Nigerians are still waiting for the last minute rush before presenting themselves for the registration.

He, however, said the Commission was impressed by those who had completed their registration both online pre-registration and the physical capturing of biometrics.

“My advice to Nigerians, especially those who are qualified but have never registered before is to do so because we are likely to round off the exercise about six to seven months before the 2023 General Elections.

“The commission has not decided yet but normally, from what we know, we will suspend the CVR between six to seven months before the general elections to enable us to clean up the voter register and print the PVCs of those who have registered so far.

“So, it is extremely important that Nigerians should not wait until June or July before they register,” he said.

On the training, he said INEC had media platforms like online newspapers, social media and public affairs officers in each of the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

He added that staff in the Voter Education and Publicity Department must be equipped for information dissemination.

Oyekanmi said the Commission would enrich its information dissemination and also improve the capability of its public affairs officers, so that when they go out to represent the commission, they would speak with one voice.

The INEC official cautioned social media influencers to desist from any attempt that could constitute a threat to national peace and security.

“We don’t have another country than Nigeria. If trouble starts and it threatens the unity of this country, we don’t have any country to call ours. If a crisis starts, God forbid, where are we going?

“Social media users and influencers should display a high sense of responsibility in the kind of information they push out about INEC activities because Nigerians are very emotional about elections and want to see what INEC is doing.

“We are open and transparent; if there is anything anyone is not clear about, they should ask us, we are open. They should contact us through any of our social media platforms or call any of our public affairs officers.”