Due to a purported restriction of access to election materials, Labour Party (LP) supporters descended upon the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) headquarters in Owerri, the capital of Imo State, on Monday.
According to information obtained by Anaedoonline.ng, the politicians voiced their displeasure over the purported restriction of access to the materials utilised in the governorship election on November 11.
Senator Athan Achonu, the candidate of the Labour Party in the recently held state gubernatorial election, alleged that the Commission had declined to furnish him with authenticated duplicates of the election materials.
Callistus Ihejiagwa, the LP state chairman, allegedly brought up the party’s complaints about the Commission’s actions in the state when he spoke to the media during the demonstration.
The LP chairman said, “INEC is frustrating us. Nine days after an official request was made by our solicitors to the State INEC office, this Commission has continued to deny our legal team access to certified true copies of documents used for the November 11 governorship election in the state as required by law.
“We have come to INEC to express our deep frustration at what is happening. Nine days ago, I was beaten up and thrown out of the hall like a common criminal while INEC and the heads of security agencies in the state looked on. We were mocked and asked to go to court.
“Nine days after they have refused us access. Why, then are they delaying the release of the CTC of requested materials? INEC was so efficient in announcing the results of 27 LGAs in less than 12 hours after the elections; why then is it taking the same INEC over 144 hours to issue the documents backing their pronouncements?”
Ihejiagwa stated that his children and wife are still finding it difficult to deal with the trauma of seeing him beaten and chased out of the collation centre by APC thugs while security personnel watched on.
Ben-Opara Emmanuella, the head of INEC’s Department of Voter Education and Publicity in Imo State, addressed the protesters and reassured them that their application was being handled.
She said, “It’s your right to request for CTC. The materials are being assembled as we speak. We are already costing the material, and by tomorrow, we’ll give you the cost of payment.”
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