The Continuous Voter Registration (CVR), which the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) concluded last Sunday recorded 12.2 million voters to bring the total number of Nigerian voters to 96.2 million.
According to INEC’s latest voter statistics, the youths may play a significant role in the elections if they use their advantage effectively. About 71 per cent of the newly registered voters are youths, which translates to about 8.7 million between the ages of 18 and 34, and about 2.4 million between ages 35 and 49.
New voters between ages 50 and 69 are about 856,017 while about 127,541 are over 70.
The statistics also showed that more women registered during the latest CVR. While 6,224,866 of the 12.2 million new registered voters are women.
In terms of the zones and their voting strength, the North West, which is made up of the seven states of Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Sokoto and Zamfara States, has the highest number of registered voters at 22.67 million out of the 96.2 million nationwide. The zone had additional 2.5 million voters from its 20.15 million in 2019.
Next is the South West which had 2.04 million new voters between 2019 and now has 18.3 million eligible voters for the 2023 elections. States in this geopolitical zone are Ekiti, Lagos, Ogun, Ondo, Osun and Oyo.
In third position is the South-South with 15.2 million registered voters as against 12.8 million in 2019. The zone is made up of Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Edo and Rivers States.
North Central is No 4 with Benue, Kogi, Kwara, Nasarawa, Niger and Plateau State in the zone. It now has 14.1 million voters, while the North East has 12.8 million, having recorded addition 1.5 million from 2019. In the North East are Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and Yobe States.
The South East, which has the smallest number of states, now has 11.49 million registered voters, while the Federal Capital Territory has 1.5 million.
Lagos maintains the No 1 position in terms of number of registered voters, increasing its figure from 6.5 million to 7.1 million. Kano State also retains its second position, adding 569,103 new voters to now have 6.02 million.
Kaduna State has 4.4 million registered voters, while Rivers State has now overtaken Katsina as the fourth largest state in terms of voters. While Rivers has 3.68 million voters, that of Katsina is 3.57 million.
Some other states with a sizeable number of registered voters are Delta (3.3 million) and Oyo (3.3 million).
Ekiti retained the last spot on the table with the lowest number of registered voters despite rising from 909,967 to 1,034,911.
The 2023 general elections begin with that of the presidential and National Assembly on 25 February, with the governorship and state assembly scheduled for 11 March.