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The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Akuku-Toru Local Government Area (LGA) of Rivers, on Monday, said the centralisation of the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) was shortchanging rural communities.
Mr Tubotamuno Dabiri, APC Chairman in Akuku-Toru made this assertion in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Port Harcourt.
Dabiri said that the cost of transportation from most of the coastal communities in the LGA to Abonnema, the council’s headquarters had discouraged people from participating in the registration.
He said that the situation could lead to denying eligible voters their right to vote for their choice of candidates in the coming elections if they were not able to register.
“There are so many people willing to come out from their communities and villages to register but they could not afford the transport fares,” he said.
Mr Nicholas Ikiriko, the LGA party secretary said that the Independent National Electoral Commission’s (INEC) decision to centralise the CVR was wrong.
Ikiriko averred that the ongoing CVR would only favour the LGAs and communities in the urban area of the state.
“How did INEC arrive at this decision? In Akuku-Toru for example, INEC did not consider how people from Kula, Abissa, Elem-Sangama, Idama and Soku would travel by boat to register in their LGA headquarters.
“I expect that INEC by now would have deployed its staff and materials to these communities to register eligible voters,” he said.
The APC leaders in Akuku-Toru, therefore, called on INEC to ensure that the exercise is decentralised to enable eligible voters register.
They also urged their party members and residents of the LGA not to lose hope, as the party would meet with other stakeholders to ensure that every eligible voter is registered.