Edo Guber: APC, PDP Trade Accusations over Alleged Hijack of CVR Exercise

Adibe Emenyonu in Benin City

Edo State chapters of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and All Progressives Congress (APC) are at loggerheads over alleged hijack of the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) ahead of the September 21 governorship election.

The exercise, which started on May 27 in Edo and Ondo states, and was expected to end on June 5, but the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) extended it till June 9.

Speaking on the exercise on Wednesday, Edo State APC Publicity Secretary, Peter Uwadiae, said his party already advocated for an extension of the exercise even before it began, stating that it would give more people the chance to register.

Uwadiae alleged that the ruling PDP in the state had hijacked the process with those who professed to be PDP members getting registered.

According to him, “It is the level playing ground, which has not been provided for all the parties to get their people registered that we are bothered about. PDP has been a stumbling block to other parties registering their members.

“It is unfortunate that you go to a registration centre and they will be asking you which party do you belong?

“At this time of registration, the issue of party should not assume this proportion. The reason why you see that there are still many people yet to register is because of the idea that is being pushed that if you are not a PDP member, you cannot register.

“Even with the extension, the problem will still be there with the government of the day monopolising the issue of registration.”

But in a swift reaction, Deputy Director General (Media) of the PDP Campaign Council, Mr. Olu Martin, said APC’s allegation was merely meant to destroy or weaken the electoral institutions.

Martin said, “Let me say that as a party, we are worried that individuals who ought to know destroy or weaken our political institutions because they want to score cheap points.

“The implications of what APC has done with this spurious allegation is that it is saying the Independent National Electoral Commission has been compromised.

“If they are saying that the INEC cannot carry out a simple CVR task, then what becomes of a cumbersome task of conducting a governorship election.

“I have never seen a PVC with APC or PDP written on it. Let’s even assume that there can be a level of influence in the ongoing CVR, it shows that the APC do not have capacity to convince people to register.

“There is no evidence to prove what they are saying. If people are encouraged to vote, but the party they belong is not written on their heads.

“My fear is that APC has achieved over the years a seeming expertise of demeaning institutions. If you can demean INEC, what then becomes of their independence.”

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