INEC reschedules PVR upgrading exercise

KIGOMA: THE Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has rescheduled the official date for the commencement of the exercise of updating Permanent Voter’s Register (PVR) from July 1 to July 20, this year.

INEC’s Chairman Judge Jacobs Mwambegele told reporters yesterday in Kigoma that the commission has decided to push forward the date after reviewing opinions of various stakeholders in Dar es Salaam and Kigoma regions.

“The commission has taken into account the stakeholders’ views and advice, thus, the exercise of updating the Permanent Voters Register will kick off on July 20th this year instead of July 1, this year as arranged before,” he said.

According to Judge Mwambegele, the exercise is set to be launched by Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa. He said the exercise is scheduled to take days from the official launch.

Coupled with that, he said the commission convened nine meetings with stakeholders at the national level in Dar es Salaam region between June 07 and 15th this year and one meeting at the regional level in Kigoma, which took place on June 19th, this year.

According to him, INEC held meetings with various stakeholders including leaders from political parties, clerics, representatives of Civil Society Organisations, editors and journalists, regional information officers, representatives of various youth groups, people with disabilities, women and elders.

Officiating at the meeting between commission and political parties’ leaders recently Judge Mwambegele said the exercise of updating the PVR will entail the use of upgraded Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) kits for efficient execution of the project.

He said the improved kits, which are expected to be used during the exercise, have been reduced in weight from 35 to 18 kilogrammes.

He said with reduced weight, the new BVR kits will simplify the PVR updating exercise particularly in remote areas since the operators will be able to carry the equipment over long distances without any problem and without getting tired.

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Judge Mwambegele said the improvement has also considered the application of modern technology and that they expect the updating to take short time.

INEC Chairman informed leaders of political parties that with upgraded technology, voters will be able to initiate the information updating process by using their own mobile phones.

“INEC has improved the Voters Registration System (VRS), and that for the first time the system will enable voters on the register to selfinitiate the process of updating information through gadgets such as cellular phone and computer,” Judge Mwambegele said.

For his part, INEC Director, Ramadhan Kailima said more than five million new voters across the country are expected to be registered in the PVR.

According to him, after the update, the permanent voter’s register is expected to have a total of 34,746,638 voters.

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