INEC to deregister CSOs not submitting reports of election monitoring

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• CVR to begin in Edo, Ondo soon

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has told civil society organisations (CSOs) that their continued participation in the electoral process will depend on their submission of reports on the elections they monitored.

Speaking yesterday in Abuja at a quarterly consultative meeting with CSOs involved in monitoring elections in the country, INEC Chairman Prof. Mahmood Yakubu said CSOs that fail to submit reports from previous exercises may not be accredited to participate in future polls.

The INEC chairman advised them to submit their applications for accreditation as election observers for the September 21 governorship elections in Edo State.

He said: “As we inch closer to Election Day in Edo State, it is also imperative to remind CSOs of the need to submit your applications for election observation in earnest along with the required supporting documents and a realistic number of individual observers.

“Doing so will enable the commission to produce and deliver the identity cards for observers in good time. The commission will not entertain requests outside the deadline for the receipt of applications from interested observer groups or process applications that do not meet the criteria.

“For emphasis, the submission of reports from previous accreditation in the manner required by the commission is mandatory for continuous participation in election observation.

“Since our last meeting two months ago, many accredited observers have submitted their reports but a few are yet to do so. We urge you to do the needful. Your reports are important for us in reviewing and improving our processes and procedures.”

Yakubu announced some vacancies in National and State Assemblies following the death or resignation of some lawmakers in three State Assembly constituencies and one Federal Constituency in four states across the country.

He said: “As soon as preparations are concluded, the commission will announce the dates for by-elections in Khana 2 State Constituency of Rivers State, the Bagwai/Shanono State Constituency of Kano State, the Zaria Kewaye State Constituency of Kaduna State, and the Garki/Babura Federal Constituency of Jigawa State.”

The INEC chairman informed the CSOs of the resumption of the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) in Edo and Ondo states, asking them to join the commission in mobilising prospective registrants.

He said there was a need for eligible voters to register early and avoid last-minute rush when registration centres would be inundated by late registrants.

Yakubu explained that besides the registration of voters in the two states, the commission would ensure that uncollected Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVCs) are available for collection during the CVR.

He said: “In the coming days, the list of uncollected PVCs will be published in our offices in the two states and simultaneously uploaded to our website. We believe doing so will make it easier for voters to collect their PVCs.

“However, no PVCs will be collected by proxy. Registered voters should come in person to collect their cards. Again, we seek the support of CSOs in encouraging voters to locate and pick up their PVCs as was done in the past.”

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