The All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) has rejected the results announced by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Anambra State, noting that the electoral process was manipulated at the collation stage by the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) in the area.
In a press conference held on Tuesday by the state’s Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Chief Tony Onyima, along with media aids of Governor Willie Obiano, on behalf of APGA, the party condemned the manner the election was conducted, saying the voting exercise was “brazenly violated and voting results manipulated at the collation stages of the electoral process by anti-democratic forces, most disturbingly by elements of Igbo extraction in the PDP, who felt encouraged by their so-called links to Abuja.”
The party lamented that “anti-democratic elements, who are also notable figures of the PDP, were directly involved in manipulating the electoral process in key areas of the state; kidnapping INEC officials, hijacking the results from polling stations and re-writing the actual figures in favour of PDP candidates.”
It said a case in point was an incident in Ihiala Local Government area, where “an attempt to stop some PDP elements from altering the results of the voting exercise led to the death of two Nigerians – a policeman and an innocent citizen.
“What is instructive in this incident is that citizen, Ifeanyi Ubah, chairman of Transformation Ambassadors of Nigeria (TAN), accompanied by Olisa Metuh, PDP National Publicity Secretary, were allegedly physically present at the scene of the incident,” it alleged.
The party further cited another case in Idemili North Local Government area, contending that it had already lodged a formal protest with the INEC “where an invading mob, led by a Federal minister, brazenly thwarted the will of the people by altering the results of the votes cast in the entire council area in favour of his junior brother, the PDP candidate, against what were recorded in the various polling booths.”
On his part, The APGA senatorial candidate for Anambra Central and the National Chairman of the party, Chief Victor Umeh, chided PDP for being indolent, to the extent of repeating a rigging trick it used 12 years ago and, worse still, the act was spearheaded by the very victim of that rigging style, Mr. Peter Obi.
Umeh, who said he was heading to the election petition tribunal, said he had all the polling units’ election results, otherwise known as Forms EC8A1, with which to argue his case and reclaim his victory.
According to him, he (Umeh) and the three House of Representatives candidates in the senatorial district, namely Chief Godson Ezenagu, Mr. Ferdinand Dozie Nwankwo and Ifeanyi Ibezi, all won their election according to the Forms EC8A1 in his possession.
Similarly, the state Leader of the Progressives People’s Alliance (PPA), Mr Godwin Ezeemo, has called for the ‘Option A4’ system in future elections in the country to avert the sharp practices in the electoral process and make the people’s voice to be heard.
Ezeemo said the party rejected the result announced by INEC in the area and has called for total cancellation, as the party would be left without any other option than to challenge the election in the law court.
Also, the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Anambra State has called on INEC to cancel the election in the states, where the card reader failed, saying that the reader formed part of the accreditation process that some states should not be favoured, to the exclusion of others.
In a briefing on Tuesday in Awka, the state’s Publicity Seceratary of APC, Mr. Okelo Madukaife, called for a proper independent investigation into the massive failures in the use of the card reader, “even in Igbo Ukwu Ward 1, where, being the pilot ward for test-running the reader in Anambra State on March 7, 2015, the gadgets succeeded above 80 percent, irrespective of the outcome of the elections.
“Specifically, we call on INEC to cancel the election held in Ogbaru Local Government, which is also a federal constituency, and conduct a proper election in which the ‘Form EC 25 B’, sighted by all polling agents at the point of arrival of INEC officials, should list the results sheets (Form EC8A, EC8A1 and EC8A 2) should be sighted and matched with the physical presence of the result sheets.
“To us, this is a minimum condition for the acceptance of polling in that federal constituency and all others areas with similar occurrences,” he opined.