The National Population Commission says it is offering 4,000 centres nationwide to the Independent National Electoral Commission to use for the ongoing Permanent Voter Card registration.
The National Chairman of NPC, Eze Duruiheoma (SAN), made this known on Friday in Owerri, at a public enlightenment programme with the theme: “One man One vote: Get your PVC -The role of National Population Commission”.
He however said that the 774 centres provided by INEC for the exercise were not enough.
He said the NPC was making the offer to enable Nigerians, who had yet to register because of distance barrier to do so before the elections.
Duruiheoma noted that one of the major challenges that had dogged the current registration was the high rate of non-collection of PVCs by registered voters.
He said: “One of the main disincentives for the collection of the PVCs is the long distance to the registration centres as many of the voters were too poor to spend any significant amount of money for the collection.’’
According to INEC, over seven million PVCs are yet to be collected as at February, 2018.
Duruiheoma said: “While it is too early to predict a high rate of non collection for the current voter registration, it will be unrealistic to expect that all registered voters will collect their PVCs before the election.
“However, the NPC through its nationwide structure can assist in putting in place cost effective and sustainable mechanism for voters to collect their PVCs.”
He noted that the commission maintained more than 4,000 registration centres for births and deaths; “these centres which are fairly spread across the 774 LGAs can serve as collection centres for the PVCs’’.
He expressed dissatisfaction at the pace of registration, while also identifying a high level of political apathy, low civic education, logistics and integrity, as some of the challenges of the exercise.
Earlier, the President of Orluzurumee Youth Assembly, Darlington Uzoahia, said the group had carried out an awareness programme in the four federal constituencies in the area.
Uzoahia said that the group had concluded plans to embark on three major programmes of activities to sensitise the people.
He also expressed the group’s willingness to partner with INEC and NPC to make the 2019 elections hitch free.