Organisation : National Electoral Commission
Facility : Voter Registration
Country : Sierra Leone
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Biometric Voter Registration :
For the 2012 Elections, the National Electoral has decided to use a biometric system of registration. Registrants will have a picture taken and provide their thumb prints. This information will be used to make sure that there are no duplicated voters and ensure the integrity of the Voter’s Register. This is a new process for Sierra Leone with the goal to uphold the principle of ‘one person, one vote’ by seeking to avoid duplicated registration. NEC is confident that you can make this process a success, but only if you clearly understand your role and are dedicated to the process.
Why is NEC Using Biometrics? :
The Biometric registration system will capture enough information about the elector to enable the register to remain current and accurate to ensure the following:
** The possibility of multiple registration is reduced to 0.01%;
** Eliminate the possibility of ghost registration as electors have to be physically present to participate in the process;
** New electors can be added to the register as necessary;
** Voters will be able to change their details and effect transfers to other electoral areas ;
** The register can be easily updated;
** Lost ID Cards can be replaced through reference to biometric details in the data
** Subsequent registration cost will be reduced as some of the equipment will still be available.
When will the Biometric Voter Registration Process take place?:
The Biometric Voter Registration (hereinafter it is called BVR) exercise will be carried out over a 15-day period per ward per phase and 4-phases. It will take place between 23rd January 23rd and March 26th, 2012. Registration will commence daily at 8am and will end at 5pm from Monday to Sunday throughout the 15-day period for VRC in each ward.
What will the BVR Process do? :
BVR exercise will produce a current, comprehensive, and accurate Voter’s Register. Only those people who are on the Voter’s Register and present a Voter’s Card will be able to vote in the 17th November, 2012 Elections.
Who can Register? :
** ** To be allowed to register, a person must meet all of the following requirements.
** ** Be Sierra Leonean by law
** ** Be 18 years old or more by November 17th, 2012 (Born on or before November 16th, 1994);
** ** Be of sound mind (People who have been committed to a mental asylum or judged to be insane are not eligible to register);
** ** Not imprisoned for conviction of a crime or under death sentence;
** ** Ordinarily resident in the area where he/she wishes to register. Any one temporarily living in an area cannot register in that area. However, voters wishing to transfer their registration from one polling centre to another where they are now permanently resident can do so.
In general, an Applicant does not need to submit any documentation to be registered. However, if the eligibility, or identity, or residential status of the applicant is in doubt,
The Registrar may request him/her to provide any of the following evidences:
Nationality: a National ID card, a Sierra Leonean passport, birth certificate, certificate of naturalisation or affidavit indicating Sierra Leonean nationality.
Age: a National ID card, a Sierra Leonean passport, Drivers’ License birth certificate or affidavit indicating age.
Residence: Local tax receipt, bills of public utilities, or affidavit indicating residence.
An Applicant can also provide non-documentary proof of identity and eligibility when they cannot produce any of the above documents. The Registrar may also accept the declaration of the following people:
** Paramount Chief
** Tribal Head
** Town Chief
** Section Chief
** Village Head
** Religious Leader
** Head of Educational Institution
Biometric Voter Registration Kit :
The Biometric Voter Registration Kit (BVR Kit) is central to the registration process. While the Data Entry Operator must be familiar with its operation and set-up, all Voter Registration staff should be familiar with its components and set-up. Below are diagrams illustrating the component parts of the BVR Kit.