The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has directed registered voters across the country that are yet to get their cards to go to their various wards for the collection of their Permanent Voters Card (PVC).
INEC said it has commenced the distribution of PVC at the various ward levels in all the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja, since Friday, January 6, and the arrangement will end on Sunday, January 15, 2023.
Each registered voter is expected to go to the state where he or she was registered, and locate the local government area (LGA) and the LGA code with registration area name (RA Name and code) and the collection centre.
Voters who applied for PVC can go to their centres with any of their temporary voter card or photocopied driving license or photocopied National Identity Card or passport photo for collection of their cards.
Festus Okoye, the national commissioner and chairman, the information and voter education committee at INEC had on Thursday, January 5, 2023 made known in a statement.
Okoye in the statement explained that those who applied to replace lost, damaged, or defaced PVCs could collect their PVCs at the registration area/wards during this period.
He explained that the collection of PVC exercise will revert to the local government offices of INEC from Sunday, January 15.
“The devolution of PVC collection to the wards commences tomorrow January 6, 2023, and all validly registered voters who are yet to collect their PVCs are encouraged to seize the opportunity of the devolution to the wards to do so.
“After January 15, 2023, the exercise will revert to the local government offices of the commission until January 22, 2023. All eligible and valid registrants can collect their PVCs from 9.00am to 3.00pm daily, including Saturdays and Sundays.
“All those that applied for replacement of lost, damaged or defaced PVCs can collect their PVCs at the registration area/wards during this period and the same thing applies to those that registered prior to the 2019 general election and are yet to collect their cards,” the statement reads.
According to an INEC officer in one of the collection centres at Surulere in Lagos, who spoke with BusinessDay, people are actually turning up to collect their PVCs but some of the cards were not available.
“People that did corrections on their card and those who did double registration instead of transfer do not have their PVCs available,” she said.
James Odadolor, a politician in Mushin in a chat emphasised the need for people to get their PVCs ready for the election come February.
“Election is a game of numbers, and the best way to usher in the government we want is to arm ourselves with our voters’ cards.
“No amount of noise will bring the change, but our ability to go out and vote and this is only possible by getting the PVCs,” he said.
The presidential and national assembly election is billed to hold on Saturday, February 25, 2023, and the governorship cum state assembly is to hold on Saturday, March 11, 2023.
Chijioke Opara, a civil servant at Lekki Phase 1 said after checking for his and everything was found, the INEC officer in his ward could not find his card and he was asked to come back in two weeks’ time.
“I don’t seem to know what is exactly happening, I was at my centre, and checked for my particulars; and even after finding things intact, they could not find my card. I was asked to come back in two weeks’ time,” he said.