The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) said it used the Christmas celebration period to enlighten residents of Enugu State in rural communities on the need to participate actively in governance.
Resident Electoral Commissioner of INEC in Enugu State, Mr Emeka Ononamadu, told newsmen today, Sunday that INEC engaged in a massive rural communities’ sensitization knowing that during yuletide there is massive numbers of indigenes around their communities.
Ononamadu said that the awareness programme focused on Continuous Voters’ Register (CVR), need for collection of Permanent Voters Card (PVC), conduct on Election Day and the need to hold elected public office holders accountable.
He said : “The sensitization we took to several communities within Udi, Ezeagu and Uzo-Uwani council areas during the yuletide, yielded much fruit as it helped to increase the number of registration in the on-going CVR exercise in the state.
“We recorded increased collection of PVC during the period, although I do not have the actual number collected on my table; but it was quite substantial compared to the collection rate before then.
“The commission also received a lot of request on relocation/ transfer of PVC voting-point from one location outside and within the state to the rural communities.
“Again, INEC staff including myself was able to answer most questions bothering the minds of the rural people on the electoral process.’’
He further said: “we also used the period to enlighten them on the need to elect credible, transparent and honest people in governance.
“We clearly told them that INEC is just an umpire, superintending over the election as the major actors are the electorate, the people, who decide by their votes who holds public office in trust for them.
“So, if your community or people decide to vote for an unsound person; and such person wins, INEC is duty bound to declare the person winner and issue a certificate of return to the person.
“It is liken to a computer, what you key-in is eventually the outcome you key-out at the end of the day and INEC should never be blamed for any incompetence discovered later.’’
On the recent release of the electoral time-table for the 2019 General Election, he said that the early release would ensure that everybody gets prepared before the time.
According to him, “With this move, the D-day will not come to anyone as surprise. INEC
wants all stakeholders in the electoral system to have ample time to get ready and start making arrangement on time.
“The early release will afford the commission time to sort out all issues in due time before the election proper.’’ End.