A ballot box filled with ballot is pictured before being counted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) at a polling station in Yenagoa in Bayelsa State ~ PIUS UTOMI EKPEI
Calabar - The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has disclosed that the collection of Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVCs) which is going on in all the electoral wards in Nigeria will end on February 8, about one week before the start of the 2015 general election.
The presidential, senatorial and House of Representatives elections would hold simultaneously throughout the country on February 14 while the governorship and state House of Assembly election would hold on February 28.
Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) of INEC for Cross River State, Dr. Okey Ezeani, made the disclosure on Thursday while interacting with members of the Inter Agency Advisory Committee on Voter Education (SICVEP).
Ezeani said with the introduction of the PVC for the conduct of the 2015 general elections, Nigeria would own the elections and determine its outcomes.
Ezeani said the 2015 election would be free and fair and devoid of violence as the INEC intends to conduct very peaceful election.
Ezeani said: “People must be counselled on this. Lots of measures are in place, including use of PVC to empower the electorate to cast their votes on election day. Accreditation now goes with the card reader.
“This election will be adjudged free, fair and violent-free. We must respect one another because we always cross parts no matter our positions; try to avoid what is not right and continue on the path of good.’’
The REC said the INEC would ensure that it respects Nigeria’s constitution and the Electoral Act in staging the elections.
He advised that those who have not collected their PVCs should endeavour to collect them instead of complaining where there is no need for such.Also read: INEC reaffirms commitment to credible elections
The REC warned that during the elections, any person who is not mandated by law to be at the polling units will be arrested and prosecuted as demanded by the Electoral Act.
He disclosed that “Super Rags” would be erected by the INEC for relevant electoral officials and security agents close to their registration polling units so as to avoid delays during elections.
Ezeani disclosed that for each of the elections, coded coloured ballot boxes and ballot papers with serial numbers would be used for the conduct of The presidential, senatorial, House of Representatives, governorship and Houses of Assembly elections, respectively.
Ezeani urged members of the SICVEP to sensitise the electorate on the voting process so, Nigeria can have successful elections.
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