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Card Reader's Failure: INEC Extends Polls To Sunday In Problem Areas

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SAN FRANCISCO, March 28, (THEWILL)  – The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Saturday said voting in the presidential and National Assembly elections would continue Sunday in areas where accreditation and voting problems had been discovered.

A statement released by Chris Iyimoga, Chairman of Information, Voter Education and Publicity Committee, INEC, said it was coming up with the plan to avoid disenfranchising eligible voters.

The statement reads: “INEC has been monitoring field reports on the accreditation process since commencement this morning.

“Whereas the process has gone well in several places, in some others it has encountered some challenges, especially the card readers. Consequently, accreditation has been slow in many places and has not commenced at all in some others.

“Even though the guidelines for the 2015 general elections provide that where card readers fail to work and cannot be replaced, elections in such PUs will be postponed to the next day, the scale of the challenge we have observed has necessitated a reconsideration of the provision of the guidelines.

“The commission has therefore decided that in problem areas where card readers fail to work, the Presiding Officer shall manually accredit voters.

“The Presiding Officer shall mark the voters register upon being satisfied that the person presenting PVC is the owner.

“Notwithstanding, in problem areas where accreditation was suspended to the next day in accordance with the guidelines, arrangements will be made for voters to vote tomorrow (Sunday), subject to the provisions of the Electoral Act 2010.

” The commission reassured the public that it would “thoroughly investigate what happened while it stays committed to credible elections.”