Independent National Election Commission (INEC) Chief Press Secretary Kayode Idowu spoke exclusively with SaharaTV one week before the rescheduled presidential elections. Mr. Idowu addressed public concern over the use of Personal Voters Card (PVCs) and card readers at polling booths.

Mr. Idowu told SaharaTV that the narrative of “PVC card readers has been misconstrued” by the media and political officials.

 “There is no basis to assume that there will be massive failure of card readers. Nothing has happened in the course of testing our card readers that there will be massive failure,” he added.

Mr. Idowu said that some of INEC’s tests of the card readers were deny some voters cards. “Fake cards were brought, and the card reader did not read it [and these tests] were completely successful.”

He explained that it is also a false information on the possibility that the PVC card readers could be hacked,  on this he said “there is no computer system supporting the card readers at all. It is battery operated. It is like a point of sales terminal.”

The PVC readers work off batteries for “for 12 hours at a time if fully charged. The commission also has more than 36,000 spare batteries which we can replace,” he said.

Kayode Iduowu also wanted to state that “Chairman Jega is totally focused and working hard” despite pressure from PDP officials for President Jonathan to remove him before elections.

He also sought to address rumors that PVC distribution was deliberately marginalizing certain areas of Nigeria. “There is nothing that indicates one area in Nigeria is getting preferential distribution of PVC…the same arrangement for people to collect PVCs is the same everywhere,” he said.

Mr. Idowu wanted to conclude with the message “I can assure you that INEC is prepared. Since the rescheduling, INEC has done much more and we are at a comfortable level. There is firm assurance that we are headed for a resoundingly successful election.”

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