The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Cross River State has said that it is taking steps to ensure that the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Bakassi Local Government Area of the state exercise their franchise in 2019.
The Resident Electoral Commissioner in the state, Dr Frankland Briyai, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Calabar on Sunday.
Briyai said the commission had begun consultations with critical stakeholders in the area to ensure that eligible voters in IDP camps were registered in the ongoing Continuous Voter Registration (CVR).
“We are strategising on how Bakassi returnees in different camps in the state are registered so that they can vote in 2019.
“No matter their situation, they have the right to choose who leads them both at the state and national levels.
“But because of the security situation in the area, we have to reach them through some critical stakeholders, including traditional rulers, youth leaders and political leaders.
“We have decided go to the camps with soldiers, policemen and other security agents for safety reasons. We feel this is the best way of getting them to register,” he said.
He urged the returnees to take advantage of the continuous voter registration to register and be ready to vote for the leaders of their choice in 2019 election and others in future.
By Patrick Okohue