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  Voter turnout has been on a steady decline since the 2003 election year. With a 69% presidential election voter turnout recorded in 2003, the last general elections in 2019 recorded a meagre 34.7% voter turnout despite the increasing adult population in the country.
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Several election critics and commentators have highlighted voter participation as a major dearth of electoral outcomes where just about 10% of the entire population votes in public officers at the national stage. The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has also acknowledged that voter education is not the only tool that can improve voter participation, improving the voter registration process will also allow for more voter participation and turnout at elections. INEC, therefore, created a Continuous Voter Registration Portal where Nigerians of voting age can Pre-Register online. INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, commented about the drive towards improving the voter registration experience of Nigerians:
“Since the resumption of voter registration on a continuous basis in 2017, the Commission has been looking at ways to make voter registration easier, more accessible, and user-friendly not only to the multitude of prospective registrants but also to registered voters who may wish to transfer their registration or have had their Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVCs) missing or defaced.”
The new online registration portal has implemented a two-stage registration process where prospective registrants log in to pre-register by providing their basic biodata and some biometrics at first instance. The second stage involves registrants physically presenting themselves at a designated registration centre of their choice for their photo and fingerprint capture.
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For citizens who are existing Registered Voters, they can review their Voter Registration details, request to update their information and transfer their voter registration to another polling unit. The Continuous Voter Registration Portal also allows replacing your damaged or lost PVC, Transfer Request, Check Pickup Locations and Find registration centres near you.

REGISTER online through this portal: to log their details.

And for citizens who are not able to pre-register online, local and state INEC offices have also opened up nationwide to accommodate on-the-spot fresh voter registration or voter information review from Monday, 28th June. With two years before the next general elections in 2023, it is hoped that this new initiative of improving the voter registration process will ensure positive voter turnout and electoral participation of Nigerians generally. Featured Image Source: Bluetooth Newspapers Limited
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This article was first published on 29th June 2021


Macaddy is mostly a farmer in the day who also dabbles into technology at night, in search of other cutting edge intersections. He's on Twitter @i_fix_you

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