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RipplesMetrics: Women lead, as data show INEC is 29.4m short on target voters for 2023 elections

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RipplesMetrics: Women lead, as data show INEC is 29.4m short on target voters for 2023 elections

Yesterday, May 30, 2022, the Independent National Electoral Commission ended the online registration of voters for the 2023 general elections.

The 11-month exercise, which began in June 2021, was expected to register at least 20-36 million voters and boost voter registration from over 84 million in 2019 to over 120 million in 2023.

Ripples Nigeria had last month quoted the Kwara State Resident Electoral Commssioner (REC), Malam Garba Attahiru-Madami, committing to the target of 120 million voters for 2023.

However, the commission’s latest Continuous Voters Registration (CVR) update statistics dated May 30, 2022 show 10.2 million (10,235,569) Nigerians applied to have voters’ card, but only 6.54 million (6,544,245) successfully completed the registration (online and in-person).

This leaves a gap of 29.4 million, a far cry from INEC’s target of over 30 million voters, meaning it will take extension and massive turnout of those within the voting age to meet the target of over 36 million.

But INEC has a clear message to Nigerians on its website, “The ongoing Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) exercise ends by 30th June 2022, in 30 days. This will enable the Commission to clean up the registration data, print the Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVCs) and compile the register ahead of the 2023 General Elections.

Online registration ends 30th May 2022. You must complete your application and schedule your appointment for biometric capture before then.”

Breakdown of completed registration

Interestingly, INEC data reveal that there are more registered women voters, 3.29 million (3,290,804) than registered male voters, 3.2 million (3,253,441).

Out of this number, INEC said 4,550,847 are youths between the ages of 18-34 while 1.36 million are those between the ages of 35 to 49.

It also noted that 556,572 of the fully registered voters are between the ages of 50-69, while only 76,186 are 70 and above.

The data also show that persons with Disabilities (PWDs) stand at 53,663.

RipplesMetrics: Women lead, as data show INEC is 29.4m short on target voters for 2023 elections

Breakdown by occupation

INEC data also revealed that students lead the freshly registered population with 2.33 million while people in business follow with 1.21 million. Farmers and the fishing population came third with 811,630, followed by 726,255 housewives.

Among the over 6 million who had registered and completed their registration are 402,245 involved in trading. Others not specified stood at 357,757. Newly registered civil servants stood at 215,074 while the number of public servants is 71,485.

RipplesMetrics: Women lead, as data show INEC is 29.4m short on target voters for 2023 elections

Breakdown by States

Osun and Delta states have the highest number of completed CVR. Osun State has 360,625 while Delta State has 327,852. At the bottom are Yobe (65,961), Enugu (71,627) and Imo (55,373).

2019 vs 2023

It has taken about 11 months since the CVR exercise began in June 2021 to get to the 6.54 million mark. This is an average of 594,545 per month.

Many Nigerians, including Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) have been calling for extension to allow more Nigerians register.

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Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), Enough is Enough Nigeria, among several others, have also threatened to sue the electoral body if it fails to extend the deadline.

While this looks like a noble move, Ripples Nigerian can confirm that even if registrations were to continue until January 2023, at the same pace, only about 4.47 million more registered voters would be added and this will add up 11.2 million, far less than the targeted 36 million to hit 120 million for 2023 elections.

Interestingly, in the CVR exercise before the 2019 general elections, a total of 14.2 million Nigerians registered between 2017 and 2018. This brought the total number of registered voters for the election to 84 million.

In summary, INEC, political parties as well as Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) may have to engage better to get more people who have attained the voting age to register and to participate in the upcoming elections.

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