Christopher Isiguzo in Enugu
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said it has registered a total of 304,359 voters made up of 154, 830 females and 149,429 males in the ongoing continuous voter registration exercise, (CVR) in Enugu State as of April 20, 2018.
Speaking at a stakeholdersâ€™ forum on CVR and update on the commissionâ€™s readiness ahead of the 2019 general election, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in the state, Mr. Emeka Ononamandu, said they were working round the clock to ensure every eligible voter was captured in the registration exercise.
He said the commission had distributed 22,913 outstanding Permanent Votersâ€™ Cards (PVC) from 2014 registration exercise that was not collected then.
He said the total number of registered voters has placed Enugu State within the first 10 states that have registered more people than other states in Nigeria. Ononamadu further disclosed that the commission has transferred 3,272 registered voters to the state and recorded as well as collected data for replacement of a total of 10,144 defaced or lost PVCs.
The REC said though INEC has done well in the continuous voter registration exercise, it has faced serious challenges of burglary which has affected its performance.
â€œSince September 2017 till date, INEC in Enugu State has faced three major burglaries that led to loss and eventual recovery of our Direct Data Capture (DDC) Machine which occasioned some delays in our CVR efforts. On September 25, our Enugu South Office was burgled and DDC machines as well as other accessories stolen. On November 2017, Oji River office was burgled while our Ezeagu Office was burgled on March 19, 2018. These burglaries have seriously affected our CVR output.
â€œThis is a dangerous trend that is becoming more consistent in Enugu than other states. It has reached a point that I am ashamed of regularly reporting case of burglary of our offices to our national headquarters.
â€œThe commission has faced incessant harassment of our staff and registration officers in the field. In one occasion, our registration officer was stabbed with bottle while he was handling registration at Prison Club. In other places, it is rare to see citizens harming a registration officer or disrupting the process because there was no security attached to each registration centre,â€ he lamented.
Ononamadu, however, assured the residents of state that under his watch, their votes will count in 2019 general election.