Resume voters registration, Court orders INEC

A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to resume the Continuous Voters Registration (CVR) with immediate effect.

Justice Inyang Ekwo, who gave the order in a judement on Tuesday, November 22, held that voters’ registration ought to last until 90 days before the 2023 general elections.

The judge directed INEC to ensure that eligible Nigerians were not deprived the opportunity to have their voter cards for the forthcoming poll.

The judgment came in a suit filed by one Anajat Salmat and three others.

The plaintiffs argued that INEC cannot stop the continuous voter registration before the time stipulated by law.

They urged the court to order the electoral umpire to resume the exercise in accordance with the laws of the country.

Justice Ekwo held that it was the constitutional responsibility of the electoral umpire to make adequate provision for the exercise in accordance with Nigerian laws.

“The case of the plaintiffs succeeds on merit,” the judge declared.

INEC launched an online voters’ registration portal in June 2021 for Nigerians to register and request to update their voter information before they complete the process physically at designated centres.

The commission fixed June 30 as the initial deadline for the CVR ahead of the 2023 elections.

It later suspended the exercise after a one-month extension following the Federal High Court’s dismissal of a suit filed by the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) which sought an extension of the exercise beyond June 30, 2022.