Home News Election: Abia women, youths protest, demand cancellation of NASS polls results

Election: Abia women, youths protest, demand cancellation of NASS polls results


ABIA- Scores of Bende women and youths on Tuesday staged a protest demanding a cancellation of the results of the March 25 Presidential and National Assembly elections in Bende Federal Constituency of Abia.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that protesters blocked the busy Uzuakoli/Akara Road, causing heavy traffic gridlock.

They displayed placards with different inscriptions decrying the poor conduct of the polls in the area and alleged falsification of the results.

According to them, the results from the polling units showed that Mr Peter Obi and Chief Frank Chinasa of the Labour Party (LP) won the Presidential and House of Representatives elections.

The Spokesperson for the protesters, Mrs Chinechetam  Mbah, said that LP received the bulk of the votes from the area.

Mbah, however, expressed shock that the number of votes alloted to the party by INEC was far above the original scores.

“We voted massively for LP in Bende, unfortunately, the result announced by INEC did not in any way reflect the huge votes the party got from here.

“This is really painful to say the least. We demand an explanation from INEC,” she said.

She further said that results collated at the polling units in the area were not uploaded to the INEC portal by electoral officials.

She alleged that INEC’s failure to transmit the results contrary to its promise provided room for the manipulation of the original scores against LP.

Mbah said: “We are asking for explanation from INEC why results were not uploaded and copies pasted at the polling units for voters to verify.

“The figures announced by INEC were not original. They were fake results.”

The protesters further said that thousands of voters were disenfranchised because INEC could not provide materials to many polling units in the area.

“This is because INEC did not provide logistics and transportation to move materials to all the polling units and so elections did not take place in many wards that are LP stronghold.

“It is unfortunate that the entire process was faulty, beginning with the delay in the distribution of materials to the failure of BVAS to function optimally,” she said.

Another protester, Mrs Grace Nnamdi, from Uzuakoli Ward A, complained that results were not announced at the polling units.

“INEC took results away with the BVAS without announcing the results at the polling units.

“There was no ward collation of results,” Nnamdi said.

Other voters, including Nkeiruka Obilor and Nneoma Jonas from Lodu Ward 005, said they were disappointed with the final result “because our people voted massively for LP”.

Mr Chibuisi Ukaegbu said that the INEC had left many people demoralised from participating in future elections.

“I dare to say that INEC altered results from Bende.

“It was better that elections did not take place in Bende.

“That would be better than robbing the people their votes for their preferred candidates and giving them to other candidates.

“We have seen that elections in Nigeria are an exercise in futility and waste of time because people”s votes would not count in elections,” Ukaegbu said.

Another protester, Collins Okezie, regretted that the INEC officials bluntly refused to upload the results at the polling units, in spite of the people’s insistence.

The protesters were unanimous in the call for the cancellation of the results from Bende.

They said that they would not accept to be disenfranchised by INEC over the commission’s failure to discharge its mandate to Nigerians.

Attempts made to get the reaction of INEC’s Spokesman in Abia, Mr Bamidele Oyetunji, were unsuccessful .

However, a senior management staff member, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, advised that any person or group that was not satisfied with the results should seek redress in court. (NAN)

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