In continuation of its efforts to deepen citizen participation ahead of the 2019 general elections, YIAGA AFRICA deployed citizen observers across the 36 states and the FCT since the commencement of the continuous voters registration exercise on Thursday, April 27, 2017.
The Continuous Voters Registration Exercise (CVR) as conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) takes place on weekdays from 9.00am to 3.00pm excluding public holidays in INEC offices at the 774 LGA headquarters and some 10 rotational registration centers that were created by INEC in all of the 36 states and the FCT. The exercise is intended to enable citizens who have turned 18 years of age since the last registration as well as those who did not register during the last voter registration exercise to register as voters. In addition, the exercise provides an opportunity for voters seeking to transfer their registration from one State, LGA or Ward to another to do so as well as distribute uncollected Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) to voters who registered earlier and are yet to collect their PVC’s.
YIAGA AFRICA #WatchingTheVote (WTV), is a citizen-led election observation initiative aimed at enhancing the integrity of elections using technology and evidence-based research methodology tools for election observation. WTV is designed to promote credible election and boost citizen’s confidence in the electoral process through the provision of citizen’s oversight on elections through the electoral cycle.
Based on observer reports submitted for the 1st quarter of 2018, the CVR exercise was conducted in all of the registration centers visited by WTV Citizen Observers in the 36 states and the FCT. Notwithstanding the procedural challenges, there were reported incidents of Direct Data Capture (DDC) machines break down in some centers, INEC officials not keeping to the official time of opening and closing and the surge in the number of prospective registrants visiting the centers as early as 5:00am. It is worthy of note that INEC responded to the increasing demand for registration by creating 10 additional centers that were rotated within wards in all of the 36 states and the FCT. WTV observers also reported that security deployment was limited across board and most political parties didn’t deploy their agents.
The findings presented in this report covers the period from January 9th to March 31st 2018 and it is based on the report submitted by 116 observers from across the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory.
Based on reports, YIAGA AFRICA WTV found that:
There was increased citizen’s awareness about the registration exercise and the location of the registration centers in the month of March 2018 as compared to the months of January and February 2018. Notably, this increase was observed to have occurred when INEC created 10 additional registration centers in the 36 states and the FCT. Although WTV received complaints about difficulties in locating the CVR centers.
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