The 2023 presidential election will hold on Saturday, and some potential voters still have questions about what to expect at their respective polling units. The INECTrainingBot is an artificial intelligence chatbot that can help to provide all the information you need before the elections.
It is important that Nigerians understand precisely how the electoral voting process will work so they can exercise their civic rights and elect their preferred candidates into office. Voters and party agents should also be interested in observing the activities of all officials present at their polling units.
Ahead of the election, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has explained the voting process over time, what to anticipate, and the different measures the commission has taken to ensure the elections are free and fair.
Thanks to the electoral act, the electoral referee has introduced innovative technology such as the Bimordial voter’s accreditation system and the INEC Result Viewing Portal (IReV), which would help verify voters’ identity and the publication of election results in real-time.
While many questions persist regarding the functionalities of these innovations, Nigerians can learn all they need to know ahead of the polls by using the INECTraining bot to get information before they troop out to the polls on Saturday.
More about the INECTrainingBot
The INEC training bot is a virtual training assistant that is available to provide all election day training materials to you in real-time and at your comfort. It was designed to help new INEC ad-hoc officials get information and media related to their job functions.
Supervisory Presiding officers (SPO), Presiding Officers (PO), Assistant Presiding Officers (APO), Collation Officers (CO), and electoral security personnel can use the platform to train for their specific roles ahead of the elections.
Also, all Nigerians can access the training materials to help them prepare for the elections, understand the roles of all officials at their polling units, how the BVAS machine works, and more.
How to use the INECTrainingBot
The training bot can be accessed on the popular messaging application, Telegram. Users can then interact with a trained artificial intelligence chatbot that will provide detailed instructions on accessing the videos and text materials (PDF) to educate them on all they need to know about the election.
The chatbot responds with a message stating its function: to train and guide users on becoming effective INEC ad-hoc officials. It then asked for the phone number to verify if it had been registered for the role.
Do not fret if your number has not been registered. The platform allows users to register on the spot after providing their names and phone numbers. It sends a one-time password that allows you access to all materials.
The bot allows users to browse topics or search for specific materials. As a first-time user, you may want to browse topics to see all the materials accessible on the platform.
There are 19 topics listed on the INEC Training bot. These include:
- Training team and their responsibilities
- Non-sensitive election materials
- Sensitive election materials
- Permanent voter card
- Overview of the bimodal voter accreditation system
- How to login to the BVAS device
- Use of BVAS for identification, verification, and authentication,
- Use of the BVAS for the export of accreditation voters
- Using the BVAS to upload election results to the form EC.8A
- Offline transmission of results
- Election day procedures
- Sorting, recording, and counting of ballots
- Issues of over-voting and reconciliation of figures
- Examples of valid and invalid ballot
- Packing up
- How to introduce yourself on election day
The bot then asks users to enter the relevant number to get that topic.
For this review, we selected the 5, an overview of the BVAS and the bot responded with the text below
Overview of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) -------------------------- Everything you need to know about INEC's Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS). The video here is very educational👇🏾 and accompanied with an easy-to-read PDF👌🏾 Please use the button(s) below ⬇️ to get the relevant linked media.
It will then provide the option to download a video or a pdf file with details of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System.
After downloading the file, the bot will return to the first message that allows browsing topics or searching, and the process can be repeated.
The bot worked seamlessly and encountered no errors during our brief test. When inputting a wrong number, the bot sends an emoji with a text that says, “you sent something I did not expect. Please look at what I asked for so that I can process your request.”
As AI chatbots like ChatGPT have dominated the headlines in recent weeks, it is commendable that INEC has adopted this technology to educate ad-hoc staff and all Nigerians ahead of a crucial period in the nation’s history.
Although other chatbots can be more interactive and intuitive, the INECTraining bot performs the task it is meant to do efficiently.
INEC provides physical training for all ad-hoc staff and has conducted training in select locations before the election. All Nigerians can learn all they need about the election from the comfort of their homes using this technology.
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