The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in Plateau has rejected the National Assembly results announced by INEC in respect of Plateau Central Senatorial Zone.
enedict Shiknungul, the chairman of the party in the zone, made its position known in a press conference on Friday in Jos.
Shiknungul, who accused INEC of trying to subvert the wish of the people, alleged that the electoral body had connived with the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC), to manipulate the process.
The chairman explained that his party won elections in four, out of the five local government areas in the zone, adding that results for the four were collated and dully documented by INEC officials, while results from Kanam were declared inconclusive due to irregularities.
declaration, PDP, on Tuesday, Feb 26, met with Malam Halilu Pai, the Resident Electoral Commisoner (REC) in the state, who promised to resolve the matter in Pankshin, the Zonal headquarters.
“But to our greatest dismay, upon arrival at Pankshin, the venue was surrounded by armed security personnel and we were told by the returning officer that the meeting was for the results to be declared.
“We acknowledge that the elections were relatively peaceful in four, out of the five local governments that make up the central zone, but on election day, we experienced insecurity and threat to lives of our party agents in Kanam Local Government.
“Our agents there were harassed, intimidated abd chased away by armed thugs.
“Similarly, there was mass failure of smart card readers during accreditation, there were also cases of over voting, delayed submission of results sheets from Kanam, and many other cases.
“We raised our concerns at the collation centre, and there was a review of the results from Kanam where a number of electoral irregularities, including irreconcilable figures, were observed.
“Because of the weight of the irregularities, Prof Joseph Mangut, the returning officer, declared the results from Kanam, and, indeed, the whole result of the elections, inconclusive.
“We are still in shock at the rumours we later heard in respect of the declaration, because it is the same officer that declared the results inconclusive with all parties signing a document to attest to that.
“On this note, we want to tell the whole world that INEC, which is supposed to be an independent and neutral body, has compromised.
“We, therefore, demand that INEC should stand by its declaration on the results from Kanam because we will not accept anything short of standing by the document earlier signed by the returning officer,” Shiknungul said.
The official, however, urged PDP supporters in the state to remain calm and be law abiding, as the party was ready to take up the matter to its logical conclusion using legal and civilised means.
Efforts to speak with Pai proved abortive while other INEC officials did not pick persistent calls to their lines. (NNN)
Edited by Ephraims Sheyin
Benue LG polls: PDP Chairman says party’s victory not a surprise
The Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Benue, Mr John Ngbede, said the party’s overwhelming victory at the council polls on May 30 didn’t come to him as a surprise.
Ngbede disclosed this in an interview with newsmen on Monday in Makurdi.
The party won 23 Chairmanship positions out of 23. Also, it won 276 Councillorship positions out of 276.
The chairman noted that the party deserved the landslide victory because it worked assiduously for it, which manifested on Saturday.
“We campaigned seriously without relenting. No political party in the state campaigned apart from PDP.
“We followed all the processes of election beginning with the congresses.
“Some political parties did not buy forms. Even the ones that bought forms they did not campaign at all. So, what did they expect,” he queried.
He also said that Benue residents voted massively for the party 8because Gov. Samuel Ortom was performing wonders for the state.
“The milestones recorded by the governor went a long way in winning votes for the party.
“He has completed a lot of projects which were started by his predecessor.
“He also initiated new ones and some of them have been completed while others are on the verge of completion and others ongoing,” Ngbede said.
PDP sweeps Benue LG polls
The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has won all the electoral positions contested in the Local Government Council polls held on May 30 in Benue.
News Agency of Nigeria reports that the elections were conducted in 23 local government councils across 276 council wards of the state.
The elections, which were adjudged by a team of election observers led by Ibrahim Sheka from Kano, as having low turn out, featured five political parties.
The five parties were; Social Democratic Party (SDP), Accord Party (AP), Africa Action Congress (AAC), All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Labour Party (LP) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) while the main opposition political party, the APC boycotted the exercise.
Loko commended the BSIEC officials for the smooth conduct of the polls and directed all elected chairmen and councilors to report to the commissions office in Makurdi on June 1, for their Certificates of Return.
Edited By: Philip Dzeremo and Abdullahi Yusuf (NAN)
Benue LG polls: Observers attribute low turn out to COVID-19
Sheka told newsmen on Saturday in Makurdi after monitoring the elections in some parts of Makurdi town, that the conduct was smooth but blamed the poor turnout on the fear of COVID-19.
Sheka lauded officials of the electoral umpire and the electorate for observing COVID-19 rules.
Also speaking after the monitoring exercise, the Chairman, Benue State Independent Electoral Council (BSIEC), Mr Joseph Loko, commended the electorate for orderliness during the polls.
Loko also commended BISEC officials for the “smooth conduct of Local Government Election in the state”.
Loko said collation of results would soon begin and expressed optimism that there would be no commotion at the end.
“So far, there has been no incidence of violence anywhere,” he said.
He also attributed voters apathy to palpable fears of COVID-19.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the polls did not hold in most designated polling units within and outside Makurdi, the state capital.
NAN reports that markets, including business outlets, were opened within the voting hours and no restriction placed on vehicular movement.
Edited By: Philip Dzeremo/Muhammad Suleiman Tola (NAN)
Commissioner, others laud LG polls in Calabar Municipality
Mr Eric Anderson, Commissioner for Culture and Tourism Development in Cross River has commended the peaceful conduct of local government elections in Calabar Municipality local government area of the state.
Anderson, who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria , after casting his vote at Diamond Hill polling unit on Saturday, said the voters were peaceful and orderly.
According to him, the electoral process has been smooth with the assistance of security agencies and other stakeholders.
“I personally don’t feel very okay about the turn out. We tried our best to get people out; but the turnout is not very impressive and we believe that before the end of the day, the voters will come out in large numbers.
“For today, I am responsible for Ward 5 in Calabar Municipality and I can tell you authoritatively that the voting process has been smooth.
He assured that the PDP will emerge victorious at the end of the polls.
A voter, Mr Akan Otu, told NAN that he voted with his face mask on, while observing social distance in line with the directive by the Cross River State Independent Electoral Commission (CROSIEC) for the polls.
Another voter, Mrs Theresa James, commended CROSIEC for adhering to the directives on social distance and use of face mask for the election.
In other polling units visited by NAN in Calabar Municipality, the process was also peaceful and orderly.
Edited By: Abiodun Esan/Ismail Abdulaziz (NAN)
Benue LG polls: Gov. Ortom votes, urges voters to leave after voting
Gov. Samuel Ortom of Benue has advised people who turned out to vote in the state Local Government Council elections on Saturday to leave the polling units as soon as they voted to guard against the spread of Covid-19.
Ortom gave the advice on Saturday in Gbajimba, headquarters of Guma Local Government Area of the state after casting his vote at the LGEA Primary School polling unit, Gbajimba.
“Vote and leave in order to give room for other electorate to also exercise their franchise.
“The Benue State Independent Electoral Commission (BSIEC) has directed that in order to guard against the spread of Covid-19 only 30 electorate will be allowed at the polling units at a time.
“So, if you vote, you have to leave to allow others too to come and vote.
“I have the confidence that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) will win overwhelmingly because in most of the local government areas, the candidates are unopposed.
Meanwhile, correspondents of the News Agency of Nigeria who monitored the polls in Makurdi, Kwande, parts of Gboko and Gwer Local Government Councils report that the polls were marred by voter apathy.
NAN reports that the polls had not commenced in any of the polling units within Makurdi metropolis as at 12 noon.
At Kanshio Primary School polling unit, located in the suburb of Makurdi,electoral officials were seen conducting the polls.
An electoral officer, Ms Priscilla Ikyer, in charge of the unit, lamented the absence of voting materials especially, ink pad, ballot boxes and stamp.
An aide to Gov. Ortom, Mr Orngu Anngu, who also voted at the unit, commended the officials for ” the peaceful and professional manner the election is being conducted”.
He also commended security officials for securing the polling unit and assured that his party would win overwhelmingly.
Orngu, however, regretted that polling unit officials were not properly kitted against Covid-19.
” They are not wearing face masks and other protective kits,” he said.
At Ikpayongo market, an accredited PDP agent in Mbasombo ward, Mr Terfa Uleve, who was cited wearing the party’s tag while displaying his wares at the market, alleged that “since there is no election, I returned to the market to sell my wares.
Reacting to the non availability of electoral materials, the Public Relations Officer of the Benue Independent Electoral Commission (BISEC), Ms Mavis Toryem, said the commission would address its shortcomings.
Edited By: Abdullahi Yusuf (NAN)
Police deploy 5,200 personnel for LG polls in Benue
Nigeria Police Command in Benue said it had deployed 5,200 personnel for Saturday, May 30 Local Government Elections in the state.
Anene said that in spite of the council polls, the 8p.m to 6a.m national curfew for COVID-19, still stands in the state.
She explained that voting would begin from 8a.m and end by 6p.m on Saturday.
She said that the State Commissioner of Police, Mr Mukaddas Garba, has assured the electorate of adequate security of lives and property during and after the polls.
Edited By: Bola Akingbehin/Felix Ajide (NAN)
LGA polls in Benue, Police deploys 5,200 personnel
The Police Command in Benue has deployed 5,200 officers for the May 30 local government council polls in the state.
“As a result, we liaise with other security agencies and raised 5,200 personnel for the election.
“They will man the polling units and streets from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
“The restriction of movement from 8:00p.m. to 6:00a.m. as a result of COVID-19 still stands.
“The restriction of movement has not changed.
“The command will give Personal Protective Equipment to the personnel deployed for the election,” she said.
Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Wale Ojetimi (NAN)
LG polls: Benue PDP chairman optimistic of victory
Mr John Ngbede, Chairman, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Benue, has expressed hope of overwhelming victory for the party during the forthcoming local council election in the state.
Ngbede expressed optimism on Thursday in Makurdi while speaking to newsmen after an expanded caucus meeting of the party.
He said the PDP in Benue was prepared to convincingly win the May 30 council election in all the council areas.
According to him, the party has positively touched the lives of Benue people and has strong hopes to earn their support.
“We are fully ready for the election, we are hopeful of winning overwhelmingly, we are sure of massive support from the electorate,” he said.
Ngbede urged Benue people to adhere strictly to all COVID-19 preventive measures during the election.
“Avoid overcrowding, respect all measures put in place by the election body,” he said.
Edited By: Azubuike Okeh/Oluwole Sogunle (NAN)
Heed NCDC guidelines on Edo, Ondo governorship polls, Group urges INEC
An interest group, Governors Mandate Network (GMN), has called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to closely monitor political parties, ahead of Edo and Ondo elections, to ensure compliance with the COVID-19 prevention protocols.
The Chairman of GMN, Mr Osaro Onaiwu, made the call in a statement issued on Tuesday in Abuja.
He stressed the need for political parties to ensure strict compliance with the protocols established by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to prevent further spread of coronavirus before and during the governorship elections in the two states.
According to him, the COVID-19 pandemic is still very active in the country, adding that political parties and politicians must not be careless in their activities so as not to endanger the lives of Nigerians under the guise of electioneering.
Onaiwu said that the world was watching INEC on the way and manner it wanted to go about the governorship elections scheduled for September and October in Edo and Ondo states respectively.
“Anything short of a modest election process that will ensure minimum mass gathering will not be acceptable to health-conscious people,” he said.
Edited By: Francis Onyeukwu and (NAN)‘Wale Sadeeq
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