The Resident Electoral Commissioner in kwara state, Mallam Garba Attahiru Madami has disclosed that not less than 980,425 Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) have been collected in Kwara State between 2015 and August 2018.
Mallam Madami stated this in Ilorin yesterday while playing host to the state Council of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) led by its Chairman, Comrade Umar Abdulwahab.
The state Resident Electoral Commissioner hinted further that a total of 264,823 PVCs were yet to be claimed by their owners in the state, adding that only 50,571 voters collected the card between 2017/2018.
In spite of all odds, the state REC was confident that the 2019 general elections would be the best in the country, saying the commission was duty bound to conduct free, fair and credible polls.
Madami gave assurance that INEC had put in place measures to address the challenges, declaring that “I want the state to be rated best”.
He, however, urged the media to bewary of fake news, crosscheck facts and figures and refer to the commission when need arises so as not to mislead the public.
“Our duty is to conduct free, fair and credible election. That we will do. 2019 election will be the best in the country I want to assure you.
INEC has put in place many things to address the challenges, we have mapped out strategies. I’m confident it would be the best.
“Our doors are opened for any information. But let me quickly add that voter registration in Kwara is very poor. Kwara is at the bottom in the voter registration when compared to other states. Less than one million people obtained PVC in Kwara, only 50,000 added to this between 2017 and 2018.
In his remarks, the state NUJ Chairman, Comrade Umar Abdulwahab, said the union had enjoyed cordial relationship with the electoral umpire and added that it should be sustained especially now that the elections are around the corner.
He, however, stressed the need to make available right information at the appropriate time if the era of fake news must be ended.
The NUJ chairman urged the commission to allow the union handle accreditation of journalists that would be assigned to cover the forthcoming general elections in the state as exemplified in the Ekiti governorship poll held few weeks ago.
Abdulwahab assured the electoral body of cooperation and support to achieve its objectives of conducting free, fair and credible elections in the state.