March 19, 2019
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PDP kicks as INEC suspends Rivers electoral process

By Idowu Isamotu, Abuja

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has rejected the suspension of electoral process declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Rivers State.

The Commission had on Sunday suspended the governorship and House of Assembly elections in Rivers State till further notice, saying some factors, including the widespread disruption of elections and violence in Polling Units and Collation Centres led to the suspension.

INEC had, however, set up a fact-finding committee to assess the situation and report back within 48 hours.

A statement issued made available by INEC National Commissioner and chairman of its Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, had said while the Commission’s staff have been taken hostage, materials including result sheets have either been seized or destroyed by unauthorised persons.

Okoye had said, “Based on reports from our officials in the field, the Independent National Electoral Commission has determined that there has been widespread disruption of elections conducted on March 9 2019 in Rivers State.”

Meanwhile, Kola Ologbondiyan, the Party’s National Publicity Secretary, urged INEC to release all the result with immediate effects, charging that the commission should end its manipulative schemes and declare the result of the March 9, 2019 Rivers state governorship election.

He said, “The party rejects the decision by INEC to suspend the electoral process in the state, after results have been collated.

“The PDP alerts that this is a premeditated plan by the APC-led Federal Government to use the instrument of INEC and security agencies to truncate the wishes of the Rivers people as already delivered at the 
polling units.

“Our party contends that elections have been concluded in Rivers state; results of the Governorship and House of Assembly polls have been declared at the various polling units, wards and local government collation centers and all returning officers and political parties in the ballot conclusively have the figures.

“It is therefore directly incumbent on INEC to declare the final results 
instead of deliberately creating openings for the subversion of the 
final process; a development, which exposes the Commission’s complicity 
with the Buhari Presidency and the APC to enmesh the election into unnecessary crisis.”

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