Politicians buying PVCs wasting their time, says INEC


The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says the alleged mop-up of permanent voter cards (PVCs) in the north is an “exercise in futility”.


Festus Okoye, the INEC spokesperson, spoke on Sunday during an interview on Channels Television.


Last week, the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) alleged that some politicians were buying PVCs with N2,000 in the northern region.


“Thousands, or possibly even millions of Northern voters, particularly women, are being made to surrender their PVCs for a pittance, in most instances not more than N2000 Naira. In some instances, they are told their cards will be returned to them after they are processed for additional payments as poverty relief. No cards are returned,” the northern elders had said.


Speaking on the development, the INEC spokesperson said the possibility of voting with acquired voter cards is next to impossible, stressing that the act can only be used for voter suppression.


“There are two possibilities here. The first possibility is for you to dispossess someone of his or her PVCs and get the person not to vote, in order words, you are engaging in voter suppression,” he said.


“If you purchase someone’s PVC and the person does not vote, what that means is that one vote is out, so you are suppressing the vote in that particular constituency. That is one aspect.

 “The second aspect of it is that some politicians are very optimistic. They normally plan for the rainy days, they are still thinking that there is a possibility that they can beat the BVAS, which will be used for voter accreditation and authentication.


“I believe that the exercise will be futile. Anybody who is purchasing PVCs is just engaging in an exercise in futility. The only thing the person can do with that PVC is to make sure that the owner does not vote on election day.


“But for you to come on election day to the polling unit with a PVC belonging to someone else and you attempt to vote with it, it is next to impossibility.


“The BVAS will not capture your fingerprint, it will not capture your facials.”

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