Bola Tinubu, the National leader of the All Progressives Congress, has issued a public apology for claiming the Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) had expired.
While speaking in Abuja on Wednesday, he also encouraged his supporters to reregister for the voters’ cards ahead of the 2023 elections.
He had said, “In case they do not announce to you on time, the PVC you have has expired. Take one family member, two family members, knock on all doors, and make sure that the new registration… Because they may not announce to you on time. The PVCs you have expired. Yes!
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: BREAKING: Court Fines Army 1bn, Orders FG To Apologise To Nnamdi Kanu
“You need to spread it to various local governments and wards at each level. No matter how difficult it is. To me, I look at it closely and you look at other elections being held, you will see that it’s diminishing because those cards expired. It’s mandatory that you go and register to vote and achieve your aspirations. May God bless you and bless Nigeria.”
These comments had sparked outrage among Nigerian social media users with many seeking clarifications from the Independent National Electoral Council, INEC.
In response, Chief Technical Advisor to the Chairman of INEC, Prof Bolade Eyinla said, “This information is not correct. The PVC issued to all previously registered voters remains valid. This kind of statement will certainly push eligible voters to register more than once, thereby creating the problem of double and multiple registrations”.
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: (BREAKING) 2023: “I have informed the Buhari of my ambition” – Tinubu
In a statement, his media team apologised explaining that Tinubu erroneously used the word ‘expire’ instead of referring to the need to update PVCs.
The statement read, “On Tuesday night in Abuja, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu granted audience to a delegation of women from Lagos and across the country attending the All Progressives Congress Women Conference. While charging the women to check the status of their voting cards and mobilise supporters to vote, he mistakenly used the word ‘expire’ instead of stating that the cards may have to be updated.
“Immediately upon being apprised of this, Asiwaju apologized for the incorrect statement and felt sorry for any confusion it may have caused. Asiwaju Tinubu also stressed that he appreciates the patriotic and necessary work of INEC and its personnel in assuring a free and fair electoral process for all Nigerians in all political parties.
“At the meeting convened at the behest of the women, Asiwaju emphasized the need for people to fully participate in elections so we strengthen our democracy. He urged them to continue to mobilize voters to update their PVCs and help thwart the prevailing voter apathy. Women must mobilize heavily to reverse the trend, he said.
“The gap between those who registered for elections and those who usually turned up to pick their PVCs was wide, adding that such constitutes a serious challenge, which may impede the growth of our democracy.
“Asiwaju Tinubu would like to reiterate this call to women to mobilize at the grassroots levels so that elections reflect the sovereign will of all the people for a true democracy to be established. He enjoins them to review their voting details with INEC so that these details will be updated before the coming elections.”