The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said that local government elections are exclusive responsibility of states’ electoral bodies and has nothing to do with it.
It has therefore argued that it must not be blamed for the alleged underage voting which purportedly took place during last weekend’s local government election in Kano State.
INEC did not however explain the use of its PVC by the alleged underaged voters, in the Kano polls, which will also be used during the general elections.
Different social media platforms were flooded with videos and pictures showing under-aged persons thumb-printing ballot papers and voting in the election.
But in its response, INEC in a statement signed by its Director, Voter Education and Publicity, Oluwole Osaze-Uzzi, in Abuja on Tuesday, clarified that the body was not in charge of LG elections.
According to Osaze-Uzzi, the images which have gone viral did not relate in any way to any election organised, conducted or superintended by INEC.
He said, “It should be pointed out here that local government elections are exclusively the responsibility of the respective State Electoral Commissions, who are in no way under the control and supervision of INEC.
“As far as the commission is concerned, they relate to a local government election conducted at the weekend, over which INEC has no legal control or responsibility whatsoever.”
He the emphasised that “the commission remains resolute in its commitment to sanitise the nation’s electoral process and deliver free, fair and credible elections.”
He added that INEC was doing all it could to ensure a credible register of voters, explaining that in addition to running the Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS), that the commission would employ its business process rules to weed unlawful entries.
While also appealing to those who did not register in the previous registration exercises to do so now, Osaze-Uzzi assured that the Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) of those who registered in 2017 would be ready for collection in May 2018.
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