The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said that Nigerians who engaged in double voters’ registration will be liable to one year imprisonment.
The Head, Voter Education and Publicity, Gender and Civil Society Liaison (INEC), FCT, Mrs. Ndidi Okafor, made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja.
Okafor, who quoted from section 117 of the Electoral Act, said “it is an offence for people to register twice.”
She said that anyone caught on account of double registration would be prosecuted and if found guilty, would be convicted to one year in prison or a fine of N100, 000 or both.
Okafor said that other consequence of double registration was that the names of offenders would be deleted from Voters’ Register, “meaning they would not have a Permanent Voter Cards (PVC).”
Speaking on the long queues at registration centres in the FCT, the INEC official cautioned that “it is not everyone that is qualified to come out to register.”
“The reason for the long queues being experienced at the registration centres is because some people who have no business going out to register are coming out.
“There are those who had registered but only need to appear before the officer in charge of transfer or corrections.
“We learnt that some people in this category claimed that it takes longer time to do transfer or correct their registration and they go for re-registration.
“This act will result in double registration and anyone caught will be prosecuted,’’ she said.
Okafor explained that there were only three categories of Nigerians that should come for registration, those who had just turned 18 years; those who had not registered before; those who had registered, had Temporary Voter Cards, but their names were not on the register.
“If you just relocate to a town and you had registered where you were living before, please do not register again.
“Just write a letter to the Resident Electoral Commission in your new place and attach a photocopy of your PVC and then come to the centre to transfer your registration.
“If you just got married and you would want your husband’s name to reflect on the PVC, please do not register a second time, go to the relevant officers and they will do the correction.
“They will give you an incidence form and guide you through the processes of having that correction done,’’ she said.
Okafor said those who lost their PVC needed to get a police report and then go to the centre, get an incidence form that will be used to process another one.
She said that anyone not too sure of his or her registration status, should check the INEC’s website.