By Abdulrasheed Yusuf
Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, says it has yet to decide on the growing request for extension of the on-going Voter Registration exercise.
There has been clamours for extension of the exercise, which began in June 2021 and it’s scheduled to end on June 30, 2022.
Ahead of the 2023 elections, the exercise has witnessed a surge in the number of registrants in recent weeks, prompting the calls for an extension. The online registration ended on May 30, 2022.
The House of Representatives on Wednesday asked the commission to extend the CVR by 60 days, while several civil society organisations and individuals also called for an extension of the exercise to enable more Nigerians register.
Punch had earlier reported that the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, SERAP, and 185 concerned Nigerians filed a suit at the Federal High Court in Lagos asking the court for, among other things, an order of mandamus to direct and compel INEC to extend voter registration by a minimum of three months and take effective measures to ensure that eligible Nigerians are able to register to enable them exercise their right to vote in the 2023 general elections.
INEC, in a notice on its website, said the deadline for the registration was to enable the commission clean up the registration data, print the permanent voter cards and compile the register ahead of the 2023 general elections.
Speaking on the request, Mr Rotimi Oyekanmi, the Chief Press Secretary to the Chairman of INEC, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, stated that the commission was yet to decide on the issue.
“INEC does not have any position yet. As of today, the deadline for the CVR remains June 30, which is less than 12 days away. The commission will decide what to do next when we get to the bridge,” the INEC Boss said.