The Independent National Electoral Commission on Thursday rejected the mandatory use of National Identity Number for the Continuous Voter Registration which recommences on June 28, 2021, in the 774 Local Government Areas ahead of the 2023 general election.
The PUNCH reported that immediately after the press conference, the INEC chairman took a dose of the Astrazeneca COVID-19 vaccine.
Others who took the vaccine were INEC National Commissioner and chairman, Information and. Other Education Committee, Festus Okoye and chairman of the commission’s press corps, Okey Nnabuchi.
Yakubu said, “The NIN is not going to be mandatory for the simple reason that we are operating on the basis of the law establishing INEC. Section 10 of the Electoral Act lists the means of identification to be presented by prospective registrants for the purpose of registration.
These includes, birth certificate, national passport, national identity card, or any other document that will prove the identity, age, and nationality of the applicants. The NIN is only one of the means of identification provided for under section 10 (2) of the Electoral Act.
“We can’t single that out and make it mandatory. All the other requirements are requirements of the law and we must apply the law equally. Yes, if you have your national ID card, you can present it during registration but we will not make it mandatory means of identification for the exercise.”
Yakubu said the registration exercise would be carried out continuously for over a year until the third quarter of 2022.
The commission had earlier in the year announced that the exercise would commence in the first quarter of 2021.