Rivers: Only 293,072 Were Accredited To Vote In April 11 Poll – INEC

A Staff of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Mrs Abimbola Oladunjuoye, told the tribunal that the figure consisted of those whose  finger prints and Primary Voters Cards (PVC) passed or failed to register in the Card Readers that were deployed for the election. The figure is however, in  sharp contrast to figures released after the poll won by Governor Nyesom Wike with over 1.2 million votes.
The All Progressive Congress, candidate in the election, Dakuku Peterside had
petitioned the Justice Suleiman Ambusar-led tribunal, challenging Wike’s victory.
Led in evidence by Counsel of the petitioner, Akin Olujimi, SAN,  Oladunjuoye, an Assist Director in charge of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) at INEC, disclosed that list of accredited voters in the states were supposed to have been uploaded from the Card Readers into INEC server not later than six weeks after the April 11 election .
She explained that all data emanating from the States ought to have registered on INEC server after the six weeks window.
But Chris Uche, SAN, Counsel to PDP , counsel to Wike, Okey Wali, Onyechi Ikpeazu, Counsel to INEC,  all argued the fact that document was not made known to the  respondents in time. They however proceeded with the matter, promising to file a written response to the document which they claim is prejudicial to the matter before the tribunal.
The  ICT expert , under cross examination told the tribunal that  data uploaded to INEC server come unit by unit. She added that she was subpoenaed to to produce voters  accreditation report as it relates to the governorship election in Rivers State.
Three other witnesses, all Mobil police unit commanders, also testified, and told the tribunal how the various Police Area Commanders were used to manipulate the election in Rivers State.
Under subpoena served on  the Inspector General of Police, the officers said they received signal to appear before the tribunal to explain their role during the election. They described how thugs and cult men took control in Tai, Khana and Ahoada East local government areas where they were posted, and under the watch of their superiors.
One of the witnesses, Garba Michael said he was deployed to Tai LGA to escort election materials there. He fold the tribunal that his unit, assisted by anti terrorism squad, arrested over 70 persons comprising security personnel, corpers, INEC adhoc staff and PDP party agents thumb printing ballot papers inside a compound that is opposite PDP office in  Seme town.
According to him,  those arrested were taken to the State Criminal Investigation Department for further action.
Another Police officer, Yusuf Buba, while giving evidence, described similar incident in Khana LGA where said he was sent along with 63 others  to secure electoral materials and staff of INEC.
He claimed that instead of performing the duty he was sent, the  Area Commander, DSP Kenneth Akabue allowed thugs to cart away the materials He equally claimed that he did not witness any voting in all the area he patrolled.
“When I reached the Bori Police Area Command , I saw people in the open field thumb printing ballot papers. I went into the command to tell the Area Commander what I saw, I met him with the Electoral Officer, and he told me to mind my own business”
Hearing in the case stretched late into the night as the petitioner run against time to meet today’s deadline of appearance of   petitioner’s witnesses.
Among witnesses who are expected to mount the witness box today is Dakuku Peterside, the APC  governorship candidate in the Rivers State poll.
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