by Oyinkansola Badejo-Okusanya
Change is constant and inevitable. And change is necessary and important to move Nigeria forward. Right now, the most important change we need is a CHANGE of ATTITUDE. Many of us that are clamouring for change on the political landscape do not have permanent voter’s cards (PVCs) and yet we desire change! How is it going to happen? How do you make a change when you do not even have the required tools to make the change?
We need a change of attitude. A change in our apathy towards politics, politicians and all things political. Otherwise we will remain in perpetual bondage to those who are ill-equipped to lead us and we (and generations to come) will suffer the consequences of our lackadaisical attitude. I therefore challenge you today to take a decisive step towards effecting the change you desire.
WHAT TO DO: First of all, spread this information. Each one, tell one. If you registered in 2011 and collected a Voter’s Card and you were unable to collect your Permanent Voter’s Card (PVC) when INEC distributed them in your state last month, you can still visit your Local Government INEC Office and collect it from now till the 13th of January, 2015. Just look for the Local Government Office in your locality and visit the INEC Office there.
You can also text INEC, the State where you registered, your surname and last 5 Digits of your VIN number on the blue strip on your Temporary Voter’s Card to the number (20120). For example text: INEC KADUNA ABDULLAH 63451 to 20120 and you will receive a reply within a few minutes. If your PVC is ready you just need to go to the INEC office and collect it. It literally takes only 5 minutes. It is not a tedious process at all. If you have never registered previously or if there was a problem with your previous registration and a PVC was not produced for you, the reply you receive will state that INEC is unable to find your details.
In this case, please keep your eyes and ears open for information about the Continuous Voters Registration exercise (CVR) which will soon begin again. We must all also continue to engage INEC in the public domain to ensure that they start the CVR exercise as soon as possible so that every eligible citizen who wants to vote, can. INEC needs to feel the heat from an enlightened, interested and involved electorate. No matter your political leanings or affiliation, it’s time to get involved. There is no other way to take charge of your destiny or make the desired change happen. Get involved.
Oyinkansola Badejo-Okusanya is a freelance writer and a general Counsel to the Governor of Lagos State.
The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.