#Adamawa: Card Reader fails to recognise Governor Ngillari’s biometrics

Bala Ngilari

A mild drama ensued at one of the designated voting centres for Internally Displaced Persons, Modibbo Adama University of Technology in Yola, as the card reader failed to capture the biometrics of the State Governor, Bala Ngillari.

Speaking to journalists shortly after the card reader machine failed to get his thumb print, Mr. Ngillari said “I am disappointed in the process, since the card reader can reject the number one citizen of the state, I am so concerned about our people who are IDPs. They trekked kilometres only to be disenfranchised by card reader. This is snail-speed process,” Mr. Ngillari said.


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  • Insighfully Incising

    Introducing Technology at a very critical election without adequate testing and retesting is clearly a wrong strategy. In previous elections, temporary voters card were used to conduct the verification process and voting. This time around, the Permanent Voters Card (PVC) was introduced. You would think that the authorities would first ensure that the PVCs are very widely distributed and used first, before introducing the Reader in the next iteration. Here we have PVCs that have just been introduces with just over 70% distribution generally, and people are still dealing with the challenges associated with it in terms of wrong name or wrong picture, and we are at the same time now introducing the Card Reader. The country is not ready for such “add on” and things like this should be introduced incrementally. We seem to be in a hurry to catch up with technology and ending up leaving a greater population of the country disenfranchised.

    • Uzoma John

      My friend there always a time to introduce something new. In as much as PDP and the no-do-gooders don’t want the card readers to work, INEC did also produce a back where voters can still be accredited and allowed to vote via the use of incident. At least when next the card readers are used, all the problems encountered now will be corrected. It’s only those afraid of a transparent process that will prevent rigging that are complaining. There can never be any other time to introduce the card reader than now. Change is the only permanent thing in life.

      • Insighfully Incising

        Dear John, You know, if you take away the sentiments of party affiliations and accusations, may be you will see the point in incremental introduction of technology. I am not speaking to rigging or groups taking advantage. Recall that this is the first time PVCs will be used. Following the second part of your thoughts which I see are more constructive than the first, indeed there is a time to introduce technology (note that I did not use the word “change” as that is not the issue in my brief discourse). In your assertion, you noted that there was alternative to accreditation when the Readers fail. Think about the time it has taken to try out the Card Readers. What I see here, is that it is introduced now as an experiment which is really not the right time and the right election to try something that new. The odds are not on INEC’s side on this one and they should have waited to use “off Term” elections to try this, like in those states that have processes separate from the main stream, like Anambra State in the next 3 years. Just my thoughts.

        • Uzoma John

          I agree with you on the idea of using an off term election to try out the card reader. Like I posited, it can never be late to try something that can make the elections transparent and credible. I am not a card carrying member of any party, just to let you know. My point is since funds have been budgeted by this government for card readers and it has been agreed that they will be used for this election, it is INEC’s responsibility to ensure the mock test of card readers. But at the same time, what support is the Federal Government and ruling party PDP giving to INEC to ensure that at least the card readers are used? Where they fail, an alternative via incident forms will be used to capture details of those not able to use the card reader. The point here is election is a process and there is room for improvement. Even with our mobile technology that is over 12 years now, we all are still struggling with connectivity issues here and there. Since the introduction of debit card by banks for ATM over 8 to 10 years ago, we still have not experienced 100% success in their functionality. Like I said, this is Nigeria, those who are afraid of a transparent process will further go out of their way to sabotage it for their selfish interest. I expected PDP to be patient and encourage people and advice them on the need to have a transparent process like APC is doing. Why is it that Jonathan is the one asking everyone to be patient and his party countered him by saying they have been vindicated? Double speaking. So any how you look at it, it is still a win win situation for Nigerian voters whose votes have never countered since the new democratic dispensation. Like I said, in every aspect of life, people do always resist change. But it is quite unfortunate that the main change agent- the Federal Govt and their party PDP are the ones resisting this change not even the Nigerian voters.

  • okey umeh

    We have to be sure that those the card readers are not accrediting did register personally and not by proxy.

  • Total

    Amaechi the area boy blamed the PDP for this in his state. Instead of blaming Jega the APC man who was ready for elections in the north and could careless about the south.