The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said that eligible voters in the November 6 governorship election in Anambra State must use its new Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS).
Disclosing this, yesterday, in Abuja during the commission’s third quarterly meeting with political parties, INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, said the move was to eliminate the possibility of voting by identity theft using another person’s Permanent Voter Card (PVC).
According to him, many stakeholders, including leaders of political parties, had called on the commission to strengthen the voter accreditation process during elections, especially with reference to the use of incident form, where the Smart Card Reader (SCR) failed to authenticate the fingerprints of a voter.
Such concern, Yakubu added, is legitimate, given that the SCR successfully verifies any card that belongs to the polling unit, for which it is configured, irrespective of who presents it.
The INEC boss explained that “where the fingerprint and facial authentication fail,” the voter would not be allowed to vote.
“In other words, no electronic authentication, no voting,” he declared.
The commission expressed its conviction that the new machine is robust enough to further guarantee the credibility of voter authentication and transparent management of results during elections. It intends to carry out a pilot exercise with the new device in Delta State during the Isoko South 1 State Assembly by-election on Saturday, September 11, 2021.
“The BVAS is expected to perform the functions of SCR and Z-Pad in the by-election,” he said.
MEANWHILE, Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) governorship candidate in the Anambra election, Chief Obiora Okonkwo, has promised to touch people’s lives in the state, to serve as launchpad for the re-invention of Nigeria.
While delivering the 2021 Dr. Sam Ekpelle Memorial Gold Paper Lecture organised by the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR), yesterday, in Asaba, Delta State, the ZLP flag-bearer said he was committed to Nigeria’s unity, despite the present security, economic and other challenges.
He, however, noted that there must be fairness and justice to sustain unity and peace.
Okonkwo also expressed his determination to add value to people’s lives as governor, even as there were limits to what he could do as a private person to positively transform lives.
According to him, private individuals with enviable records of success in their endeavours cannot continue to cede the political space to persons who have nothing to offer other than to loot public treasuries.
The lecture entitled ‘Reinventing Nigeria’s Unity for Global Relevance in the 21st Century: Issues of Identity, Governance, and Stability” also featured the investiture of Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, as NIPR patron.