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INEC gives fresh updates on BVAS reconfiguration ahead of March 18 elections

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has revealed that the reconfiguration of the Bimodal Voter Registration Systems (BVAS) would be completed by Tuesday, March 14, in preparation for the March 18 governorship and state Assembly elections.

Recall that INEC had postponed the governorship and state Houses of Assembly elections scheduled to hold on March 11 to March 18 in order to be able to reconfigure the BVAS.

Consequently, all activities pertaining to the polls were rescheduled, including the inspection of sensitive materials at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) by the political parties.

INEC took the decision at its management meeting, which was convened on Wednesday, March 8, 2023, after the Court of Appeal gave it the go-ahead to reconfigure the BVAS machines.

The commission said it could not go ahead with the governorship poll as earlier scheduled because it needed time to reconfigure the BVAS machines, which were used for the presidential election on February 25.

The Court of Appeal had dismissed an application by the Labour Party challenging the reconfiguration of the BVAS used for the presidential poll, whose outcome LP had rejected.

The appellate court panel held that allowing the objections of the Labour Party and its presidential candidate, Peter Obi, would amount to “tying the hands of the respondent (INEC).”

In the latest development, INEC National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, on Sunday, March 12, 2023, while featuring on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics said the BVAS reconfiguration will be ready by tomorrow, Tuesday, March 13.

He also disclosed that over 170,000 polling unit results of the Feb. 25 presidential and National Assembly elections have been uploaded on its Result Viewing Portal (IReV).

According to him, no political party will be given permission to look into the brain of the BVAS used for voter accreditation and electronic transmission of votes.

Okoye said, “As of the last time, over 170,000 of those results have been uploaded.

“In fact, the BVAS will not allow itself to be reconfigured or reset if the entire data isn’t pushed to the accreditation backend.

“I am sure that by Tuesday when we hope to complete the resettling of the BVAS for the purposes of the governorship and state assembly elections, the results in all the places where elections were conducted would’ve been pushed to the accreditation backend.”

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