February 8, 2015 – Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says as at February 5, 2015, Nigerians have collected a total of 45, 829,888 Permanent Voters Cards(PVC)s across the nation.
Briefing newsmen in Abuja, INEC Chairman, Professor Attahiru Jega said the figure represents 66.58 percent of registered voters across the nation.
He said the Presidential and National Assembly election will now hold March 28 while the Governorship and State Assembly election will hold April 11, 2014.
He said the decision to shift the date was based on security reports made available to INEC by National Security Adviser who had on Wednesday written INEC on the need to shift the date based on security challenges in Borno, Gombe, Adamawa and Yobe.
He said NSA’s letter was reinforced by all the service chiefs at the Council of State meeting that the security of operation during the election cannot be guaranteed.
According to him, the Service Chiefs made it clear that the period coinciding with the election will be used by security forces to concentrate in the theater of war and conclude a major military operation in the North-east and that they may not be able to provide the security assistance they usually provide the police and other security agencies.
“They said they will require some time, that they needed at least six weeks to conclude operation against the insurgents, he said.
He explained that in shifting the date, INEC relied on Section 26, subsection 1 of the Electoral Act as amended.
He said INEC will use the period of the extension to perfect operation praying that security will improve by the new date.
He said INEC has not made provision for people to transfer PVCs since it has already produced a register for the election.
He said the postponement will not come at an additional cost since most of the sensitive materials like ballot boxes have arrived and are in volt very secured and ready to be moved to the field.
He said only few electoral bodies will undertake to conduct election under this condition.
On allegations of meeting with Arewa, he said the allegation is false and that he has not met with any group and does not intend to do that and that he would rather resign than do what is suggested in the allegations.
He said he would have gone to court to compel those making the allegations to provide the facts but for the seriousness of his assignment.