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INEC sidelining people from S’East, S’South in voter registration—Lagos PDP chairman

Former member of the House of Representatives and current chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Lagos State, Hon. Moshood Adegoke Salvador has accused the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of carefully creating a scenario that will end of disenfranchising some marked regions from growing in the number of voters ahead of 2019 general elections.

This is as the agency is set to begin distribution of Permanent Voter Cards (PVC) to newly registered eligible voters in Lagos State.

INEC’s spokesman, Femi Akinbiyi, said weekend that arrangements have been concluded for the distribution of PVC in the 20 local government areas of the state.

In an interview, he revealed that “Definitely on Monday, we are going to start the distribution of PVCs at the INEC offices in the 20 local government areas of the state,” stressing that “The available cards now are only for those who registered in 2017 and that is from the inception of the exercise in April 2017 to December 2017”.

“We are still expecting more cards; other cards will be made available later, especially for those who registered in the first quarter of 2018 and those currently registering,” Akinbiyi said.

According to him, the Resident Electoral Commissioner in the state, Mr. Sam Olumekun, had on Thursday last week met with local INEC officials on modality for distribution of the PVCs in their respective council areas.

In an interview, the Lagos PDP chairman, Adegoke averred that he said “We have powerful structures on ground to sensitize people on the importance of getting registered and collecting their permanent voters cards (PVC)”.

“As we speak they are finding it difficult to even register, when a whole unit will tell you that they cannot register more than 20 people. We also got reports that they were sideling people from other regions, especially the South South and South East regions. Another report said that they collected names of 40 people, told them that they had registered them, only to release a list of 15 names.

While querying if this is how we want democracy to thrive, Adegoke averred that “We had meetings and lodged complaints and they promised they would improve, up till now nothing had been done.    sued was a member of the House of Representatives. He is the chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Lagos State”.

According to him, “We have continued to talk to INEC on some of these issues without any improvement. I can confidently tell you that INEC has compromised. I want to appeal to the general public to get up and save us from the hands of INEC”.

He revealed that “In 2015 we had about 7.5 million registered voters, this year there are about 8.6 registered voters. We should have 10 million registered voters. The chairman of INEC should please call his people to order. We want our people to get registered so that they can have the opportunity of voting in 2019. I think that is the only way we can deepen democracy”.