Zakaa Lazarus, Abuja.
National Leader, Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) in the All Progressive Congress (APC), Hon. Tolu Bankole, has appealed to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to extend the continuous Voter’s registration for one month.
The letter reads:
Dear Prof Yakubu,
According to the Commission’s Continuous Voters’ Registration Update: Quarter 4, Week 16, which was released on August 1, 2022, only 87,083 PWDs were able to beat the deadline despite the repeated efforts by eligible members of our community to participate in the electoral process leading to 2023.
As part of efforts to assess the level of participation of PWDs empirically in the Continuous Voters’ Registration exercise, we held a National Summit on Thursday, August 4, 2022 in Abuja and we observed that PWDs who were excluded from the exercise are in two categories:
I.Those who have done the online pre-registration but could not complete the physical registration due to the rowdy situation in most registration points.
II.And those who were not captured despite their frantic efforts at the physical registration points.
III.Our estimation from our findings revealed that those excluded are more than the number registered as cited by the Commission above.
Although we recognize the Commission’s position on the constraints of time: to print millions of Permanent Voters’ Card (PVCs) for all fresh registrants and applicants for transfer and replacement of lost or damaged PVCs; to print the final register of voters in triplicate for the 2023 General Election among others.
Also, we appreciate your PWDs inclusive policies since your assumption of office that have led to tangible actions as against mere rhetoric of the past.
However, we appeal on behalf of thousands of Persons With Disabilities, PWDs across the country who would be disenfranchise due to no fault of theirs other than being impaired that the Commission considers the extension of the Continuous Voters’ Registration (CVR) for one month for Persons With Disabilities, PWDs. We believe if this extension is granted, PWDs clusters across the country will maximize this non-obstructive window to participate fully in the Continuous Voters’ Registration.
Extending the Continuous Voters’ Registration (CVR) by one month for Persons With Disabilities, PWDs is the right call in the circumstance because it would forestall the imminent disenfranchisement of thousands of eligible PWDs in the 2023 general elections.
Hon Tolu Bankole
National Leader PWDs