No PVC, No voting – INEC insist
By Alex Uangbaoje, Kaduna
Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC yesterday said there is no going back on the commission’s decision to adhere strictly to the no Permanent Voters Card PVC no voting, insisting that only eligible voters with their PVCs will be allowed to vote in the february 2015 general elections.
INEC reiterated its position at a one day workshop organized for Journalists by Africa Media Development Foundation (AMDF) on engendering election coverage, reporting and citizens mobilization in Kaduna yesterday.
The Resident Electoral Commissioner REC Kaduna State Mallam Hussien Mahuta stressed the commission’s position, while reaffirming the commitment of INEC to conduct a free, fair and credible polls.
On the call for either a postponement or extension of the election time table by some quarters, the REC who was represented by Hajia Fatimah Aliyu of the public affairs department of the commission also informed that the are yet to receive any directive from the national body to that effect, adding that the window for re- registration, transfer has long closed since December, 2014.
“INEC is still committed that there free, fair and credible polls, but only those with their PVCs will be eligible to exercise their franchise.
“INEC will not disenfranchise any eligible voters but the use of the PVCs till now cannot be compromised because of the card readers that is expected to be used to check fraudulent practices during the polls.
He appealed to Nigerians to give maximum support to INEC in its quest to conduct a much more credible elections devoid of violence of any kind before, during and after the elections as was witnessed in 2011.
Earlier and while speaking on the theme “Credible election, the role of Journalists,” a Media Practitioner, Joseph Edegbo reminded the journalist of the huge task on their shoulders saying “As journalist, your work carries a tremendous amount of responsibility as the shape and outcome of the electoral process, depend largely on the display of professionalism.
“It is therefore our hope that you will avail yourselves of this training opportunity to ensure that a level playing field is provided for all political actors and ensure that people’s votes will count through a highly professional management of news as part of your contributions towards attaining a credible elections in the next few days,” Mr. Edegbo emphasized.
Meanwhile, other speakers at the workshop also dwelt on the role of the media in consolidating Nigeria’s democracy, place of fairness and conflict sensitivity while covering or reporting elections and safety tips for Journalists while on their election beats as well as the use of social media as a tool for on the spot reporting.