The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Friday said it has recorded an unprecedented surge in the number of citizens seeking to registers as voters ahead of the 2023 elections.
The Chairman of INEC’s Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, revealed this in a statement.
“The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has received reports from our States indicating an unprecedented surge in the number of citizens that wish to register as voters and the challenges they face across the country. In some States, the sudden turnout of prospective registrants is overwhelming,” the statement said.
“Consequently, the Commission convened an urgent meeting with all the Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) yesterday Thursday 9th June 2022 to review the situation so that eligible Nigerians who wish to register are able to do so. The necessity to urgently deploy more voter enrolment machines to ease the congestion at the registration centres was identified as a priority.
“In response, the Commission has immediately released additional 209 machines deployed mainly to the five South Eastern States, Lagos and Kano where the pressure is most acute.
“The Commission will monitor the situation over the next few days. Thereafter, it will meet to review the progress of the exercise.
“Every step will be taken and all options will be explored to ensure that eligible Nigerians are given the opportunity to register as voters.
“The Commission appeals for patience and understanding of all citizens. Every Nigerian who is 18 years of age and above has the constitutional right to register and vote in any part of the country he/she resides without let or hinderance.
“The sudden surge is an affirmation of the increasing confidence Nigerians have in our electoral process. The Commission will continue to ensure that this confidence is sustained.”