The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has begun the installation of software that will help the commission detect multiple registration in the just concluded voter registration exercise across the country.
INEC Public Relations Officer (PRO) in Ekiti State, Taiwo Gbadegesin, told reporters that the Commission have also started the display of the register in all the 2,195 polling units across the state. Part of the fears expressed by political parties over the last voter registration exercise was the likelihood of multiple registration that could facilitate fraud in April elections.
Mr Gbadegesin, who spoke on behalf of the Resident Electoral Commission (REC), Isyaku Maigoro, said the verification of multiple registration in the exercise will commence immediately the Commission ends the display of the register on February 18. "The verification exercise will be done centrally at the Commission's headquarters in Ado Ekiti and not at the polling units as it is being done in the ongoing display of names," he said.
He said the national leadership of the electoral body is committed to the conduct of a free, fair, credible and internationally acceptable election in April and that the issue of multiple registration that could create room for rigging cannot be treated with levity.
Authenticate the register
The INEC spokesman said the verification exercise will be thoroughly done to ascertain the authenticity of the registration of over 700,000 people as prospective voters in the exercise . "This is not an issue that can be treated with levity. Our office had received the ICT software that will enable us to perform a verification exercise by processing all the names of those that registered to ascertain whether they comply with the rule that stipulated that you can only register once," he said. "We are to commence the process as soon as we are through with the ongoing display of voter register exercise." He said the display of voter register will afford INEC the opportunity to entertain complaints and objections from the public before proceeding to the next level of the exercise.
Mr Gbadegesin called on the members of the public to join hands with the electoral body in its promise to conduct a credible election for the nation in 2011 by discharging all their obligations timely in any of the Commission's exercise.