2023: Sufficient BVAS available for 176,846 polling units – INEC

AS the 2023 general elections draws close, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said it has sufficient number of Bimodal Voter Accreditation Systems (BVAS) machines to conduct elections in the 176,846 polling units across the country.

INEC National Commissioner, Festus Okoye made this known on December 31, during a live appearance on Channels TV’s 2022 in Retrospect monitored by The ICIR.

“The BVAS, which we said will be the game-changer in relation to this election, is in place. And I want to confirm that we have a sufficient number of BVAS that will be used in the conduct of elections in the 176,846 polling units across this country,” he said.

The INEC commissioner said over 1.4 million adhoc staff will be trained on the effective usage of the BVAS.

“We want to train our adhoc staff longer so that we won’t have people not knowing how to use the BVAS and blaming it on technology and so on.

“We are also harvesting the names and details of those that will serve as our adhoc staff. For the two elections, the national and state elections, we are going to engage over 1.4 million adhoc staff and we are going to train them,” Okoye added.

There have been reports of late that some politicians want to go to court to stop INEC from deploying the BVAS machines and the Result Viewing Portal (IReV) in next year’s elections but the electoral body has consistently restated its commitment and determination to deploy the technological innovations for the polls.

The BVAS is a technological system that allows the accreditation of voters through biometrics capturing, uploading of results, amongst others.

It has been described by many as an upgrade of the smartcard reader used in the last general elections.

Okoye further stated that the Commission’s processes and procedures are going well as planned, adding that Nigerians should expect a very good election in 2023.

“The people of this country should expect that INEC will conduct a very good election. Conducting a very good election in terms of the fact that we started preparations for the 2023 general elections immediately we finished with the 2019 general election.






     

     

    “As at today, our processes and procedures are going well as planned.”

    Okoye said by December 30, 2022, political parties were supposed to have submitted the names, signatures and personal particulars of their polling agents in relation to the national election.

    By January 6, 2023, they are supposed to submit the names, signatures, photographs and particulars of their agents for state elections.

    The INEC commissioner also said on January 12, 2023, INEC will release the official list of voters noting that “all these things are going as planned and they are going to be accomplished on schedule”.

    Harrison Edeh is a journalist with the International Centre for Investigative Reporting, always determined to drive advocacy for good governance through holding public officials and businesses accountable.

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