Jos- Sen. Gyang Pwajok, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate in Plateau, on Saturday said the electronic card reader was never necessary because the manual accreditation was much easier and faster.
Pwajok told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Jos that INEC’s directive replacing the electronic Card Readers accreditation with the manual and argued that the manual accreditation was much easier.
“The electronic card reader was never necessary in the first place and that was what we told Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC),’’
“In one of the polling units in Jos South Local Government with 780 voters only 26 PVCs were brought.
“The voters complained and were promised by INEC but no other card came.
“If the accreditation was conducted manually, such people will be allowed to vote because they have the INEC Temporary Voter Cards (TVCs) which were issued by INEC, since they struggled in vain to get the PVCs,’’ he said.
Pwajok argued that it was even wrong for INEC to change the rules of the game midstream after sensing failure.
“It simply means that those that voted on Saturday and those who may vote tomorrow have different rules in the same game; this certainly is an admission that the electoral body did not do its homework well,’’ he said.
He recalled that Gov. Jonah Jang had consistently insisted that people with TVCs, that could not get their PVCs, be allowed to vote since the failure to get the PVCs was not their own fault.
“If INEC had listened to that counsel, we would not be in this situation,’’ he said.
NAN reports that INEC had approved the use of the manual accreditation “after being sufficiently satisfied that the PVCs belonging to the prospective voters could not be distributed.’’
The electoral body in a statement signed by Dr Chris Eyimoga, Chairman, Information, voter education and publicity committee, INEC said that the step was “informed by the level of challenges encountered in the Saturday elections.
“Where cards readers have failed to work, the presiding officer shall manually accredit voters by marking the register,’’ it added.
NAN reports that about 56 million Nigerians, out of the 68 million registered voters, received their PVCs, the only card that qualifies a voter to vote. (NAN)