Why oval holes?

Why oval holes?

The Old Smoothie is a wonderful bass, and I love the attention to detail like the string tree being for the D and G strings and the pieced together prickup cover. What I’m trying to figure out is why the holes in the pick up cover are oval (except for the ones in the center)? If it was simply made from two 8 pole covers, wouldn’t the holes be circular and line up? I am sure I am missing something, so I ask you all to either share knowledge or just speculate wildly:)
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