Chaos in Abuja as protesters storm INEC headquarters, Wike reacts

Scores of protesters on Tuesday, November 8, stormed the headquarters of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Abuja, over the alleged production of fake election re-run results in Rivers state.


There are allegations that fake results were produced in the recently conducted Rivers election re-run. (File photo)

Premium Times reports that the protesters alleged that a former acting INEC chairperson, Amina Zakari, is conniving with some politicians of Nigeria’s ruling party to print fake result sheets. No evidence was produced to buttress the allegations.

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They called for the resignation of the INEC chairperson, Mahmud Mohammed, as well as Ms. Zakari who is currently an INEC commissioner.

The electoral commission last week fixed December 10 for the Rivers re-run election to produce lawmakers that will represent the south-south state in the Senate and House of Representatives.

Previous elections to fill the seats were marred by violence and subsequently suspended by INEC.

There has been mass anger, especially among political parties in Rivers state following a video of fake result sheets being printed for the yet-to-be-conducted re-run election for Rivers South-East senatorial district.

The police reportedly bursted a printing press where fake Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) result sheets were being produced in Port Harcourt on Saturday, November 5.

In a statement released late on Sunday, November 6 and signed by Prince Dayo Adeyeye, PDP’s national publicity secretary, the opposition party called for swift action on the part of the Presidency against those involved.

It also called for the suspension of transport minister Chibuike Amaechi who was reportedly mentioned in connection with the fake result printing ring.

Meanwhile, Rivers state governor, Nyesom Wike, has accused the Police High Command of plotting to sweep the alleged printing of fake result sheets by the All Progressives Congress (APC) under the carpet with the takeover of the matter by the Police Zone 6, Calabar.

Giving an update at the Government House, Port Harcourt, yesterday on the alleged printing of fake election result sheets by Rivers APC and INEC, Wike said the Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG) Zone 6 has asked the Rivers State Police Command to transfer the case and suspects to Calabar.

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He said: “The interest of the police is to ensure that all those indicted in this plot to rig the rerun elections are not prosecuted.

“INEC must realise that this has to do with its credibility . It is not enough to simply deny. They must take steps to ensure that they clear themselves.

“The question of how the printers got the serial numbers and the code numbers of the units used for the results sheets and sensitive materials must be answered by INEC.

“During the rerun tribunal sitting, the Rivers APC tendered results that were different from those declared by INEC after the March 19 elections. But the Court of Appeal and the tribunal were not deceived by the antics of the Rivers APC and INEC. These were the same people who said no election took place, but they had separate result sheets which they tendered in court.”

The governor recalled that PDP had raised the alarm on the day of the March 19 rerun elections that INEC had populated the voting landscape with fake result sheets, which was confirmed by the tendering of alternate results by the APC at the tribunal.

He called on the police and INEC to listen to the president’s directive that the elections in Ondo and Rivers States must be peaceful and credible.

Wike restated that Rivers people would resist those plotting to rig the re-run elections. He added that the objective of sweeping the crime under the carpet was for the police and other security agencies to assist Rivers APC in swapping already prepared results with those generated at the polls.

“What we are doing is to avoid crisis or violence. We are insisting that the right thing must be done. Any free and fair election in Rivers State will be won by the PDP.

“The AIG coming to take over the matter is not acceptable. It is a ploy to kill the matter,” he said.

He emphasised, “The police should stop causing crisis in Rivers State. We do not want to take the laws into our hands. They should listen to what Mr. President said and avoid anything that would cause violence.

“The police in Rivers State should be allowed to handle this matter. The police should give the preliminary report. We will resist any attempt to transfer the matter to Zone 6, Calabar.

“If the AIG takes over a minor criminal case like printing of fake result sheets, what will he do if there is a complicated case of murder? The fact is that if the matter goes to zone 6, they may decide to destroy the evidence. But here in Port Harcourt, we will know.”

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