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Ahead 2023: INEC Set To Sophisticate Card Reader With New Technology

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has today revealed that the commission is reviewing its technology especially concerning card readers to improve the conduct and security of the votes.

The Commission Director of voter Education and Publicity (VEP), Mr. Nick Dazang made this known during a workshop program for INEC staff on “Review of National Voter Education Manual” held in Keffi, Nasarawa state.

The five-day workshop was championed by INEC in collaboration with Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD), based in the UK.

While addressing newsmen, Dazang disclosed that INEC is in the process of making electronic voting a reality since 2004 when it first introduced the optic map registration form.

In his statement; “After that in 2010, the commission introduced the use of direct data capture machines, and then expanded the use of the machines in the conduct of the 2011 election.

“So, we have started the process as far back as 2004, culminating in the use of the Smart Card Reader (SCR) and the Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) that we also used in 2015.

According to Dazang, the electoral empire started the process in an effort to improve the outcome of the 2023 general election and to compete with the global standard.

He said, “The commission wants to introduce new technologies that will help deepen the conduct of the elections and also improve on them. So the commission is working assiduously on that.

“Very soon, when the Commission has taken a position, it will come out and explain to Nigerians how this is going to be done,” Dazang said.

He explained that while revisiting the new technology, INEC is considering improving the card reader such that it will work hitch-free when is switched over to an electronic system in 2023.

Dazang added that the commission has been working for a long on this and if it finally succeeds it would come out publicly to tell the Nigerian about it.

He promised Nigerians that the electoral empire would continue to improve on the electoral process of voting in Nigeria until it is fine-tuned.

He said the INEC has no regret so far on all technologies it unveiled so far for the conduct of its election in Nigeria, saying this has helped in deepening the process of transparency in the system.

Voter education is also being improved upon to ensure that there is a better understanding of all the processes to Nigerians, he said.

Meanwhile, on the amendment of the electoral Act, Dazang revealed that his office is keeping a proper liaison with the two committees of the National Assembly and so far there is an achievement.

He expressed optimism that the NASS would rise to the challenge in meeting up with its promise to Nigeria to amend the Electoral Act before the end of the first quarter of 2021.

Speaking about the Anambra state governorship election, the INEC officer said the commission is making all preparation to make a hitch-free election and would tell Nigerians the date and time soon.