A coalition of concerned youths who came together under the Youth alliance on constitution and electoral reform (YACORE) to engage the government and advocate for electoral and constitutional reforms recently released an observation report on the recently concluded Permanent Voter Card (PVC) distribution and the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) exercise in Ekiti and Osun state at a retreat held at the Channel View Hotel, Calabar.
Present at this retreat were the Director Of Voter Education, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Osun state Rev Canon Ojewande and the Public Relations Officer INEC Ekiti state, Mr Taiwo Gbadegesin, Mrs Ann Ekpeme representing Project Director, UNDP/ DGD, Dr Mourtada Deme.
During the presentation of the reports, YACORE commended INEC on the execution of both exercises however they pointed various areas of improvement which will further enhance the credibility of electoral processes. Some of the areas pointed out include improvement in logistics which will ensure the process starts at the stated time across all polling units, continuous training of both ad hoc staff and INEC staff, training for security operatives at the polling units, adequate voter education for the electorate, training for the political parties and their agents at the polling units, accessibility of polling units to include persons with disabilities amongst others.
Rev Canon Ojewande in his presentation commended YACORE for its efforts and interest in electoral processes especially considering it is a youth organization. He also assured the coalition of INEC’s collaboration in further electoral activities and stated that the report will be looked into and appropriate adjustments will be made towards ensuring better electoral activities in the future. He said that a desk has been created to ensure the inclusion of persons with disabilities; this desk also caters to gender issues. He also reiterated the need for CSOs and political parties to partner with INEC on voter education in order to enhance the political process in Nigeria.
By: Remy Serrano