Voters Education: What you need to know about Accreditation of Voters on Election day

by Ajadi Daniel

What is accreditation?

Accreditation is the process of identifying voters who are qualified to vote

Why are the voters accredited?

1  To check unauthorized and multiple voting;

2  To stop impersonation as only the owners of voter’s card can vote;

3  To ascertain if the voter has previously voted in the election;

4  To ensure that only those who are registered in that unit actually vote there.

What are the procedures for accreditation?

1  The voters queue up in an orderly manner

2  The Poll Officials use the Smart Card Reader to read (verify and authenticate) the Permanent Voters Card (PVC) presented by a voter seeking to be accredited to confirm that his/her name in the register of voters in that unit and that he/she is the rightful owner of the card;

3  The officials then cross check the name in the register and tick on the left side of the register after the confirmation

4  Indelible ink is applied on the appropriate finger of the voter’s left hand;

5  If the voter’s fingerprint is not authenticated, the voter may still be accredited if the Presiding Officer is satisfied that his/her name is in the register and that he/she is the right owner of the card

Is accreditation compulsory for people living with disability?

Yes. All persons who intend to vote in any election must be accredited before voting

Would accreditation before voting not waste time?

No. This procedure is simple and time-saving, once people are orderly

Can I send a representative with my voter’s card to be accredited and vote on my behalf?

No. Accreditation or Voting by proxy is not allowed. You must be physically present at the polling unit before you can be accredited or vote.

I have just been accredited and I understand I have to stay within the polling unit to be able to cast my vote. Does this mean I have to forego every other thing and spend the whole day there just for an election?

In order to cast your vote, you are advised to stay within the polling unit before voting starts. If you decide to leave, ensure you return to the polling unit before the commencement of voting at 1:30pm. Once voters queue up and the number is recorded, no voter, accredited or not, will be allowed to join the queue.

Can anyone be accredited after the time stipulated to join the accreditation queue?

Yes, but only if you are already on the queue as at the closing time for accreditation. Any voter who comes after close of accreditation/voting (which is presently 2.00pm) will not be allowed to vote.

Is there any way to prove or ascertain that a person has been accredited?

Yes. The poll officials will apply indelible ink at the appropriate finger of your left hand for accreditation.

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