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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says it plans to activate 46 registration centres for Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) in Delta on March 8.

Rev. Monday Udoh-Tom, the state INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) said this at the Aniocha/Oshimili Federal Constituency CVR town hall meeting/clinic at Ibuza in Aniocha North Local Government Area (LGA) of the state on Thursday.

Udoh-Tom said that the new centres would raise the number of centres in the state to 73, saying that the commission took step to create additional registration centres in order to bring the CVR closer to the people at the grassroots.

He said that it was another opportunity to redouble the efforts of community, religious and political leadership of the state at all levels to mobilise more eligible residents to put their names on the national voters roll.

“Let me state without equivocation that the CVR is absolutely bi-partisan, and it should therefore be seen in the light of what is good for Delta and indeed Nigeria.

“The ongoing nationwide CVR, which is now in the third phase, commenced on June 28, 2021, with the online component.

“While the in-person or physical registration began on July 26, 2021, at the 25 INEC LGA offices and two registration centres at the state head office, Asaba.

“It is necessary at this point, to state that the current figure of 442,672 online registration and 188,919 completed registration as at Feb. 21, 2022, reflects poorly on the performance of Delta.

“There is absolutely no doubt that given the state potential of hosting a large number of youths, majority of whom fall within the bracket of eligible registrants in the state population demography,” he said.

He added, “The initial in-house projection of substantially increasing the state voting strength by 1.5 million eligible voters was well-founded.

“With less than five months to end the CVR exercise and considering the current number of Polling Units at 5,624, with a threshold of 750 registered voters per Polling Unit.

“The state voting strength should be in the region of 4.3 million at the close of the exercise. It is therefore easy to see that we are far from where we intend to be.”

Udoh-Tom said that the commission thought it necessary to create a forum to bring together all stakeholders to abreast them of the commission’s plans and processes for the activation of additional registration centres in the state.

“This town hall meeting is therefore intended to bring all shades of opinion and political leaning together without prejudice to partisan posture, to ask and provide answers to questions on CVR as well as processes for the activation of more registration centres.

“Permit me to emphasize the relevance of voter registration, as it is the basis for any meaningful electoral process, which underscores the reasons why we are all gathered here today,” he said.

Responding, the Minority Leader, House of Representatives, Reps Ndudi Elumelu (PDP), while commending INEC for the initiative, noted that the activation of more registration centres would help to improve the voting strength of the communities.

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