The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has urged Nigerians to disregard claims by a chieftain of All Progressives Congress (APC) Ahmed Bola Tinubu that the Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVCs) have an expiry date.
According to the commission, Nigerians who already have the PVCs do not need to register again as the cards have not expired, adding that they remain valid for future elections.
The former Lagos State governor, who is also a presidential aspirant had in a trending video, urged his supporters to go and take part in the ongoing ‘new registration’ because “the PVC you have has expired”.
Speaking while addressing the women leaders of the party who paid him a visit in Abuja, Tinubu asked voters to obtain new PVCs.
Tinubu said, “In case they do not announce to you on time, the PVC you have has expired.
“Take one family member, two family members, knock on all doors and make sure that the new registration… Because they may not announce to you on time. The PVCs you have has expired. Yes!
“You need to spread it to various local government and wards at each levels. No matter how difficult it is. To me, I look at it closely and you look at other elections being held, you will see that it’s diminishing because those cards (is) expired.
“It’s mandatory that you go and register to vote and achieve your aspirations. May God bless you and bless Nigeria.”
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But responding to the claim, the Chief Technical Adviser to the Chairman of INEC, Prof. Bolade Eyinla, said on Wednesday in Abuja that the PVCs issued in recent years remain valid for all elections being conducted by INEC, urging Nigerians not to attempt to register again if they already have a PVC.
“This information is not correct. The PVC issued to all previously registered voters remains valid.
“This kind of statement will certainly push eligible voters to register more than once thereby creating the problem of double and multiple registrations,” he said.
On his part, the Chief Press Secretary to the INEC Chairman, Rotimi Oyekanmi, said that Nigerians who already have their PVCs do not need to register again.
He warned that, “In fact, double registration is an offence under our laws. Eligible Nigerians are entitled to register only once. Once a name appears on the National Register of Voters, it stays there permanently.
“One of the very few instances where a name could be removed from the register is if there’s a strong and verifiable proof that the person bearing the name has died.”