The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has said that it will deploy new technologies in making the 2023 elections the best coordinated in Nigeria.
The Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, in Kwara, Garba Attahiru-Madami, stated this during the commemoration of 2022 Democracy Day, organised by Michael Imoudu Institute of Labour Studies in Ilorin on Monday.
He said that INEC will utilise the new technologies with the aim of improving electoral process in the country.
Mr Attahiru-Madami said that Nigeria started using digital technology in the electoral process in 2011, adding that the commission introduced the automated fingerprint identification system to stop voters from registering more than once.
“The permanent voter card and smart card reader were introduced in the 2015 general elections. At the polling station, a voter’s identity is verified by matching his/her biometrics with the voter’s card,” he said.
He noted that the use of the technologies had improved the legitimacy of past the electoral process, adding that the commission has also improved on it and would ensure that all the identified irregularities were eliminated.
The REC enjoined all eligible citizens to get their PVCs, stressing that it was their power to make choice for good leadership in the country.
He, however, warned people against multiple registrations, adding that political parties must caution their members against contravening the law governing voter registration.
According to Attahiru-Madami, a fine of N1 million and/or imprisonment awaits any violator of the voter registration law.
Earlier in his address of welcome, Director-General of MINILS, Mr Isa Aremu, said that democracy day was worth celebrating, as it had brought about great development and enhanced human rights.
He commended President Muhammadu Buhari for moving the commemoration of democracy day to June 12 and for the posthumous award bestowed on the late Chief M.K.O. Abiola.
Mr Aremu commended INEC for its roles in fostering democracy in the country, adding that so far 84 million Nigerians had been registered as voters.
He said that the institute would continue to assist in fostering and strengthening democracy in the country.
In his speech, Oba Abdulrahman Abioye, the Olukotun of Ikotun in Oyun Local Government Area of the state, enjoined Nigerians to have confidence in INEC and in the country’s democracy.
He also appealed to Nigerians to get registered in order to have the opportunity of electing leaders of their choice in 2023.