Much research on developing countries highlights the developmental potential associated with ICTs as a rationale for implementing particular information systems. However, such initiatives are often problematic to realize and difficult to sustain. In this paper we examine the promise of development associated with the introduction of an Electronic Voters’ Registration (EVR) system in Nigeria. We employ key concepts from Sen’s capability approach to assess the arrangements made by the Nigerian government and its Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to enable participation in registration and polling exercises, focusing on the scope these opportunities provided for expanding people’s freedoms to engage in developmental activities. Our analysis shows that the arrangements were sufficient to encourage significant voter turnout but inadequate to sustain developmental potential. We conclude with some implications for policy makers advancing an agenda of ‘ICTs for development’.