Hello Mr Rufai. Trust you’re doing well😊. I have a query that’s been bothering my mind about the PVC.
With the deployment of the BVAS, accreditation on election day is expected to be seamless and completely electronic as photographs of voters and their biometrics will be taken for verification, which means that there won’t be anytime during the process, when the PVC will interact with the BVAS (Please correct me if I’m wrong). This new innovation means that in the whole process, unlike the former smartcard readers where you have to scan the PVCs to bring out voter’s details, the only time when the PVC is actually used is when you show the cards to the polling officials as proof that you’re a registered voter (another issue the voters register addresses).
Now here lies my query:
If the PVCs are only shown to the polling officials as proof of registration, then the BVAS handles the remaining part of the accreditation exercise and voters confirm from the voters register to be sure that they are indeed at their polling units, can prospective voters who registered and collected their PVCs but misplaced them approach the polling station, confirm their names on the voters register and proceed to accreditation and verification since the BVAS handles that process?
Secondly: the incorporation of technology in our election process is bound to increase overtime hence, wouldn’t it make more sense to; asides having a physical card also have a virtual one which the BVAS will be able to scan in the form of barcodes?
The commission will then have a databank of registered PVCs, which would be of numerous benefits to the commission especially in planning future elections.
The Electoral Act 2022 is clear about “No PVC, no voting,” but why invest billions into registration, printing and distribution of cards whose purpose is basically “for show” on election day? Something the Voter register can adequately address.
The level of sophistication to which our election process has gotten should be able to allow voters who have a valid means of identification e.g, national ID card, to vote since the BVAS machine handles accreditation and authentication.
I’m more worried because there’s this growing hypothesis about how the election can be sabotaged through INEC and the PVC distribution, which connected the dots as to why it’s facilities are being attacked.
I have asked this question on the official INEC correspondent’s platform but got no response.