45% of new voter registrations nationwide is invalid, says INEC

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says 45 percent of new voter registrations are invalid.

Mahmood Yakubu, INEC chairman, said this today during a press briefing in Abuja.

He said the country is now in the fourth quarter of the ongoing continuous voter registration (CVR) which was restarted on June 28, 2021, after it was suspended for the 2019 general election.

He said while the number of new registrants is very impressive, the commission has a duty to clean up the data to ensure that only eligible Nigerians are registered.

“Unfortunately, the troubling issue of invalid registration still persists which we detected while cleaning up the latest registration data,” he said.

“Sadly, it seems that many registrants, either out of ignorance that they do not need to re-register if they had done so before, or a belief that our systems will not detect this infraction, have gone out to register again. This is despite repeated warnings by the commission against this illegal action. In addition, there are also registrants whose data were incomplete and did not meet our business rules for inclusion in the register.

“Presently, nearly 45% of completed registrations nationwide are invalid, rising to as high as 60% or more in some states. This infraction happened in all states of the federation. No state is immune from it. These invalid registrations will not be included in the register of voters. This development is worrisome because of the time and resources expended in handling these cases.

”As we have repeatedly explained, if you had at any time in the past registered to vote, you do not have to reregister. If you have registered in the past, you should not get involved in the CVR again unless you have had problems with your PVC or fingerprint recognition during accreditation in any previous election. In that case, all you need to do is to revalidate your registration by visiting a designated registration centre to recapture your fingerprints and picture.”