We are looking to create polling units in Nigerian prisons – INEC

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said it is making progress in its bid to ensure that prisoners are allowed to vote in the 2019 general elections.

Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, said this in Abuja on Tuesday at a dialogue session with the Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room Dialogue.


A Federal High Court in Benin had ruled that prisoners in Nigeria have the right to vote in all elections conducted in the country.

What Mahmoud said: 

  • He said the commission was looking to create polling units in Nigerian prisons.
  • Mahmood said certain categories of prisoners would not be allowed to vote depending on the nature of their crimes.

Yakubu said, “We have already engaged the Comptroller-General of Prisons and we have statistics on the number of prisoners nationwide and the number of inmates that are registered. We are looking at the possibility of creating polling units in the prisons and to enable some categories of prisoners to vote.

“Ghana does it but there are some categories of prisoners who by the nature of crimes committed lose the right to vote. Whatever we can do to open up the process to ensure that as much as possible Nigerians are given the opportunity to vote, will be done.”

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