Rumours Of Jega’s Removal won’t distract us – INEC

Rumours Of Jega’s Removal won’t distract us – INEC

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has disregarded rumours of the planned removal of its Chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega, saying its focus is on the preparations to conduct the general elections, billed for March 28 and April 11.

The commission disclosed that a total of 55, 232, 875 Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) or 80.24 per cent have been distributed just as the outstanding one million PVCs have been received by INEC.

Chairman of the INEC Information and Voter Education Committee, Dr. Chris Iyimoga, who spoke at a press conference said “we are not distracted, we are very focused. The country should expect nothing than the best from INEC in this year’s general elections”.

Dr. Iyimoga who is also an INEC National Commissioner, stated that only President Goodluck Jonathan and the National Assembly can determine the time Jega will leave office.

Despite explanations by President Goodluck Jonathan, that he has no plans to remove Jega, speculations were rife that moves were on to make Jega proceed on terminal leave this month, because his tenure in office end in June this year.

He said “this is not an area I should dabble into. The appointment of the Chairman of the commission is the responsibility of Mr. president and it has an endorsement of the National Assembly and whatever position that is to be taken has to come from that end”, he said.

Iyimoga expressed confidence that with the improvement in the security situation in the North East, INEC is “prepared to hold elections in some areas where there is IDPs (internally displaced persons)”.

On the level of PVC distribution, the INEC national commissioner disclosed that a total of 55, 232, 875 permanent voter’s cards (PVCs) or 80.24 per cent have so far been distributed while the outstanding one million PVCs have been received.

The commission is also going to be in position to make a categorical statement about when this PVCs are to be distributed finally because we have told this nation that we still have about a million which we expect this week and in fact, I spoke with the director ICT and he said he has gotten it and we will see what time we will give for those who are yet to collect theirs.

“Let me make this very clear and I want you to take me by my words, the commission has made the commitment that by the 8th of this month which is Sunday we are likely to say collections of PVC should stop. There is likelihood of extension”, he added.

He added that the commission had received ballot papers meant for all the elections since February 12 which have been deployed to the states accordingly.

“They are securely locked at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) vaults across the states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), awaiting further distribution at the eve of each of the elections. We have also received and distributed all ballot boxes meant for the elections.

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