By Enweliku Kent
The Delta State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Nicholas Azinge has called on the electorates in Delta State to seize the opportunity of the ongoing Continuous Voters Registration exercise to get registered as a crucial step towards voting in candidates of their own choice in the forthcoming elections.
Dr. Nicholas Azinge made the call on Tuesday, June 6, 2017 in his office when a delegation of the Advocacy for Quality Leadership and Health Foundation paid him a courtesy visit.
He commended the group’s initiative and encouraged them “to keep doing the good work because even in advanced countries, the population has to be educated about their voting rights”.
Dr. Azinge further emphasized the need for voter’s education as voters need to be educated on their voting rights which translate to voting in credible candidates of their choice.
The Commissioner assured the group that he will take time to study the report, adding that he will transmit same to other stakeholders for their attention and necessary action with the aim of achieving massive turnout of the people for the on-going registration and ultimately, at the polls.
Speaking earlier, Mr. Peter Nwaokolo, National Secretary, Advocacy for Quality Leadership and Health Foundation said that they were in the Office of the Commissioner to formally present their report on the assessment of the on-going Continuous Voter Registration in the State.
Mr. Nwaokolo said the “Advocacy for Quality Leadership and Health Foundation is a Civil Society Organization, accredited by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), strongly committed to promoting democratic values and practices” adding that they have been in the State for the past three weeks to monitor the on-going Continuous Voters Registration in the State.
He revealed that rigging starts at the point of registration and urged all hands to be on deck to ensure the success of the registration exercise citing voters’ apathy as a disturbing trend in the exercise.
The Group’s National Secretary said that in the course of their advocacy and monitoring of the exercise, people have expressed their challenges encountered to include: inadequate functional Direct Data Capturing Devices; the issue of a voter registration centre servicing one Local Government Area which is inadequate, and the distance between people’s homes and the Local Government Area which doubles as the registration centre.
Mr. Nwaokolo called on all stakeholders, especially the political parties to drive the process, stating that they should be in the forefront to see that optimum participation of the electorates in the voting process is achieved.
Highlight of the visit was the presentation of a copy of the group’s preliminary report to the Honourable Commissioner, Dr. Nicholas Azinge by the Group’s National Secretary, Mr. Peter Nwaokolo.