Witness Says Election Did Not Hold In Rivers

Governorship candidate of the Action Democratic Party (ADP) in Rivers State Victor Fingesi, who is also a security expert, has told the governorship election petition tribunal that election did not hold in the state in March 9, 2010 polls. According to him this was because reported electoral malpractice and violence which characterized the governorship poll in the state.

He instituted the case against the declaration of the state Governor Nyesom Wike of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The party based their claims on INEC’s statement of March 15, 2019 on the exercise announcing the suspension of the process in the state, especially the collation of results, citing wide-spread electoral violence and tension as reasons.

The Petitioner and his political party had approached the three-man election tribunal to nullify INEC’s action and order for a fresh and violence-free exercise to be held.

The petitioners and INEC have since concluded their case, the PDP and it’s candidate, Governor Wike who are 2nd and 3rd respondent in the suite are presently presenting their witnesses.

A total of 18 witnesses have already been called by the party, they are mainly ward and LGA collation agents for the party and Governor Wike during the exercise, each denied the INEC electoral violent report, insisting that the poll held and was also peaceful.

However, under cross-examination, counsel for the petition, Dolapo Tella Attoni discovered that the PDP witness, Chioma Ogwugwueli, a male, who appeared before the panelists with a document appointing him as collation agent for Emohua ward 3, in the March 9, governoship election, had earlier in his witness statement deposited before the tribunal registry, which is also before the tribunal, named him as the LGA collation agent, instead of one Adiele Ogbor he claimed yesterday.

“I served and worked as Emohua LGA Ward 3, collation agent in the governorship election as appointed by my PDP party.”

On the question of whether INEC officials did sign the EC-8B (result sheet), document after collating the ward election results in accordance with electoral guideline said “I do not know”.

Also under cross-examination, PDP witness, Nwaobilor Jonas Morgan, who is also the party ward collation agent in the poll, also admitted that peaceful election was held in his ward 3, Igbo 1, Etche LGA, and the results dully collated and announced by INEC officials at the ward collation centre and the EC-8B signed by INEC and copies given to him were handed over to his PDP LGA collation agent.

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