By Jubril Bada
Ondo State Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Dr. Rufus Akeju has disclosed that 1,831,845 voters have been registered in the state.
The Commissioner made the disclosure in an interview with The Hope, yesterday.
Giving the breakdown of the registered voters in the state, Akeju said there were a total of 1,659, 186 registered voters as at 2016 governorship election in the state while 172,659 were newly registeredin the just concluded Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) exercise which brought the total to 1,831,845 registered voters in the state.
Akeju further disclosed that there is a total number of 347,560 uncollected Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVCs) with the commission.
He urged the rightful owners of yet-to-be collected PVCs to come for the collection of their cards at the local government offices of the commission in the state.
Asked whether the commission will continue with its public enlightenment drives, Akeju said it is a major exercise and the commission has asked other stakeholders to join hands with it on the need to educate the electorate against double thumb printing.
According to him, “the cards are very important and it is beyond voting as it can be used for other purposes like the registration of children to receive medical attention.
“It is a very important card. The commission has met with traditional rulers to appeal to their subjects to come for the collection of their PVCs.
“The cards are not useful to the commission if not collected by their rightful owners. They should go to the local government offices of the commission and collect their PVCs to enable them participate in elections.
“It is also important for political parties to join hands with the commission to enlighten voters on the importance of exercising their franchise on the day of election.”
The commissioner said the commission is on daily basis distributing the PVCs and advised voters not to sell their votes as INEC has warned that the selling of vote is illegal.
Furthermore, he said the prevention of voters from taking phones to where to thump print is to prevent them from taking pictures of ballot paper for collection of money from politicians