The Ekiti State Governor, Biodun Oyebanji, on Tuesday praised Ekiti people for trooping out in numbers to collect their Permanent Voter Cards at the Independent National Electoral Commission designated centres.
Oyebanji, in a bid to ensure a large number of registered voters got their PVCs to participate in the general elections, had last weekend declared Tuesday work-free day.
The governor said that the public holiday declared by the government was a huge success in view of the impressive turnout of intending voters to obtain their cards.
Represented by his deputy, Mrs Monisade Afuye, during monitoring to ensure compliance with the state government’s directive for registrants to troop out and collect their PVCs, the governor harped on the need to redress the trend of citizens’ reluctance to exercise their franchise rights during elections in the state.
The governor, who said that collection of PVC was one of the ways to strengthen the country’s electoral system, said no nation experiencing voter apathy could grow and develop, saying “it is good that you have come out in large numbers. It is for your own benefit, but some don’t value it.
“We are moving round so that the purpose for which this holiday was declared will be met and we have no reason to regret, with the population of registrants that we are seeing at all INEC offices that I have visited.
“You all know that voter apathy has always been a serious danger in the country’s elections. And it is an attempt for this government to tackle this problem that the state declared today as a public holiday for our people to collect their PVCs to participate in all elections.
“This year’s elections are very important to us in Ekiti and Southwest and poor interest to vote will not help our course. We also commend the staff of the Independent National Electoral commission for making themselves available for this exercise.
“You should not only collect this PVCs, come out on the day of elections and vote, this is the best way for you and I to build our nation.”