The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is preparing to digitalise the voting process in response to Nigerians who want the body to deepen the use of technology in elections.
INEC National chairman Prof. Mahmood Yakubu said he has invited manufacturers of electronic voting machines (EVMs) around the world to practically demonstrate how the machines work, preparatory to full migration.
Yakubu said that over 40 companies that indicated interest will demonstrate to the commission how their IT solutions meet its specifications.
INEC also held an event to demonstrate EVMs in Abuja on Monday.
“Over the years, the commission has been automating the critical pillars of the process,” Mahmood said at the event.
“The biometric register of voters has been updated continuously. At the moment, the INEC register of voters is the largest data base of citizens in Nigeria.
“In addition, the combination of biometric voters’ cards commonly known as the Permanent Voter’s Card (PVC) and the Smart Card Reader (SCR) have revolutionised the accreditation of voters during elections.
“More recently, the introduction of a number of portals has facilitated the seamless nomination of candidates for elective offices by political parties as well as the accreditation of observers and the media.
“Most significantly, the Commission now uploads polling unit level results in real-time on Election Day to a portal for public view.
“These are significant innovations that have deepened the transparency and credibility of elections and the electoral process in Nigeria.
“The commission is aware that Nigerians want us to deepen the use of technology in elections.
“Let me reassure Nigerians that the commission is committed to expediting the process leading to the deployment of EVMs in elections in earnest,” Yakubu said.