By Jide Afolabi, Jos
The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Plateau Central Zone has called for the total cancellation of the senatorial elections held in Kanam on Saturday, February 23, 2019.
PDP made the call today, Friday in Jos, Plateau state during a press conference addressed by the Chairman, (PDP) Plateau Central Zone, Hon Benedict Shignuhul at the party’s state secretariat in Jos, the state capital.
In the press statement signed by Benedict, the party alleged that Kanam witnessed insecurity and threat to the lives of the party’s agents who, ‘were harassed, intimidated, and chased away’ on Election Day.
He said that the call for cancellation was as a result of, “failure of Smart Card Readers for accreditation, cases of over voting, delay submission of results as well as submission of multiple result sheets from Kanam Local Government”.
He noted that the party raised concerns with INEC which led to the review of the results from Kanam.
He said, “At the end of the review between the INEC staff and political parties involved in the elections, it was declared by INEC that the result from Kanam is inconclusive”. According to PDP, a document was signed to this effect by INEC Returning Officer for the National Assembly in the presence of and witnessed by APC and PDP party agents.
“Following this declaration, the party’s candidates met with the Resident Electoral Commissioner in Jos on Tuesday, February 26th, 2019 where he assured the party that the INEC officials will go back to Panksin to further review the results in Kanam.”
He said that the party was, “amazed to witness a heavy presence of security agents including the military, armored tanks, police dogs and civil defence” upon arrival in Pankshin.
Benedict noted that at the commencement of the meeting, PDP delegation demanded for the presence of the INEC Collation Officer for Kanam LGA, one Dr Tolu Oke, who it alleged to have absconded.
“To the shock of the PDP delegation, the INEC Returning Officer informed the meeting that it was not about a review of the election results but that they came to “declare the results.”
PDP said that it reminded the Returning Officer that the meeting was meant to review the results and not declaration having already been declared inconclusive.
“We have it on good authority that there are attempts to manipulate and alter the accreditation and voter information on the Smart Card Readers. So we call on INEC to maintain its integrity by ensuring that the Smart Card Readers are protected and the data is secured without any alterations.”
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