The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has discovered 93,526 multiple registration cases in Anambra ahead of the November 16 governorship election.
The chairman of the commission, Attahiru Jega, stated this on Monday in Abuja during an interactive session with civil society organizations and the media on voters’ registration optimization.
The INEC chairman said that before the 2011 general elections, the commission discovered 870,000 cases of multiple registrations nationwide.
He promised that the commission would ensure that it eliminates ghost voters in the 2015 polls starting with the offenders in Anambra State, especially as it partners with the Nigeria Bar Association, NBA, to jointly commence prosecution of more people who contravene electoral laws.
“We have prosecuted over 200 people; we have asked our legal department in Anambra State to commence prosecution of some of these multiple registrants, because we want it to be an example before we commence the continuous voters’ registration, that the register has come down by five per cent from what was registered in 2011, is because we removed all multiple registrations in compiling the register.” Jega said.
He lamented that good governance will continue to elude the nation if the people’s votes were not made to count in the election of leaders.
Jega identified underage registration as a major problem affecting smooth registration in the country adding that community connivance, lack of vigilance by security operatives and INEC staff also contributed to underage registration.
INEC boss expressed concern that in many communities where multiple registrations occurred, INEC officials were helpless after threats by residents.
He said, henceforth, all voters’ cards would be issued and collected at the local governments with age identification by the electorate to minimize electoral fraud.
“As we count down to the 2015 elections the commission is increasingly fine-tuning work process to ensure delivery of elections that are much more free, fair and credible than that of 2011,” Jegasaid.
He, however, solicited supports from stakeholders and all Nigerians to ensure the success of 2015 general elections.
The INEC chairman also stated that the newly registered party, All Progressives Congress, APC, is free to field candidates in the forthcoming election in Anambra.
He noted that the provision in Section 84 (c) of the Electoral Act qualifies the new party to field candidates for the November 16 governorship election in the state.