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INEC, Wike bicker over Rivers rerun poll

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Rivers State Governor and Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) convention planning committee, Nyesom Wike.

Rivers State Governor and Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) convention planning committee, Nyesom Wike.

I’ve facts to back my allegations, gov insists

Ahead of the rerun election in Rivers State, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has cautioned Governor Nyesom Wike against making comments that could instigate his loyalists to cause violence.

The re-scheduled National Assembly (Senate and House of Representatives) and House of Assembly election will hold next Saturday.As preparations are being concluded for the poll, INEC yesterday expressed worry over Wike’s alleged “relentless false allegations, provocative and dangerous comments” capable of inciting people to commit violent acts that could derail the election.

The electoral body also appealed to stakeholders and all the political parties as well as their supporters to refrain from actions that could breach the extant laws governing the electoral process.

In a statement yesterday, the commission reminded the stakeholders that the elections earlier fixed for July 30, 2016 could not hold following persistent inflammatory comments by political actors and others in the state.

While re-stating ‎its determination to conclude the elections in a free, fair and transparent manner next Saturday, INEC reassured Nigerians of its commitment to remain impartial at all times. “The commission hereby restates its determination to conclude the elections in Rivers State in a free, fair, and transparent manner on the said Saturday, 10th December 2016.

“The recent Edo and Ondo governorship elections eloquently speak of the feat that can be achieved if all stakeholders do the needful.
“However, INEC condemns, in very strong terms, the relentless false allegations, provocative and dangerous comments being made by some political actors, especially the Governor of River State, Mr. Nyesom Wike against the commission, all of which are capable of inciting people to commit violent acts that could derail the election.”

In his reaction, Governor Wike urged INEC to do the right thing,saying he would continue to speak on the conduct of free and credible poll irrespective of INEC’s warning.

The governor’s spokesman, Simeon Nwakaudu, told The Guardian that Wike “insists on free, fair and credible elections and for every statement he has made he has facts and figures. For every position he has made public he has clear facts and figures to support them and INEC is aware of them.

“Fake materials were printed here. The people were arrested. INEC has done nothing to facilitate the prosecution of those persons. It has kept quite and allowed the police to sweep the issue under the carpet.

Wike wondered why INEC allegedly failed to respond to allegations that it handed electoral materials to members of the APC. In obedience to court orders resulting from disputes over the 2015 general elections, INEC conducted a rerun poll in the state on 19 March, 2016, to fill state assemblies. Unfortunately, an outbreak of violence forced the commission to suspend the exercise.

At the time the election was suspended, voting had either ended in some constituencies with the winners declared or the exercise had been concluded in other areas but collation of results had not been completed.

Besides, the electoral umpire said certain unauthorised persons had put the commission’s officials under duress to declare results at some locations, while balloting did not take place at all in others.

In an effort to conclude the election, the commission held a stakeholders’ forum in Abuja on June 30, 2016, where it was agreed that the exercise be held on July 30, 2016.

But following an attack on the commission’s office at Khana Local Government on July 22, 2016 by unknown persons and security reports, it became impossible to hold the election as planned.

After months of wide consultations with stakeholders aimed at creating a conducive atmosphere, the INEC announced on November 3, 2016 that the election would hold on December 10, 2016.

Meanwhile, Kano State governor and Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, (APC) Campaign Committee for the election, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has promised that the party would repeat in Rivers State the feat it achieved in Ondo State.

But he admitted that the party and the committee would need to seriously strategise to win because, according to him, Rivers is a difficult terrain to win an election.


In this article:
INECNyesom Wike

14 Comments
  • Chukwu

    Wike is simply applying his party, pdp’s usual gimmick of crying wolf where there is none. Na today?

    • Akubeze Emmanuel

      What will make anyone in his or her right senses vote APC? That’s the 1 million dollar question to answer @ Chukwu..APC has failed

      • Chukwu

        If you can describe Apc’s one and a half year in power as “failed”, I’m wondering how you will describe pdp’s 16 years catastrophic rule.

        • Akubeze Emmanuel

          Was a bag of rice ever 24000 naira, was dollar ever this high, was this judiciary bullied like we see it now?

          • Chukwu

            Nwanne gbalu ogwu wu nuo biko. The only constant thing in life is change. Could you believe there was a time when the same bag of rice you referred to was sold for N50 in this country.

            Ask your your father if you don’t know.

          • APC IS A FAILURE AND SET BACK

            You are the biggest fool in Nigeria to say such words just imagine the prize different in 1 year. If that is how it is by now you have to buy a bag of rice for N500,000.00. stop fooling your self okay.

          • Chukwu

            Thanks the” wisest” man in Nigeria. But I still maintain my stand.

        • APC IS A FAILURE AND SET BACK

          Listen APC is a set back to Nigeria. They should try and carried Nigeria forward from were PDP stop, not set back and failure. Nigeria need positive change, please APC understand what Nigerians want and bring positive change and stop talking about PDP. Now is APC Government not PDP.

      • Wole

        Amazing question, but those corrupt junks of politicians in PDP are very attractive to you and the likes? 16 years of crude oil boom wasted on frivolities, but you expect another party to fix everything in one year with less than half the income.

        • APC IS A FAILURE AND SET BACK

          Big fool shot up, STUPID amechi was in pdp for 16 years still the Rivers State money, now he is set to still Federal money that is his mission. God go kill him and his followers in Jesus name…AMEN….

          • Wole

            What do you have against Amaechi in particular, he is not the only former PDP member that is now in APC? Many politician from PDP are decamping to APC

        • Akubeze Emmanuel

          And APC is full of saint from heaven…the likes of Amechi, Tinubu, Atiku etc. My brother Wale if haven’t come to take side political, No. The truth be told the government of the day a clueless and have no idea of how to make things work

          • Wole

            Since both parties have failed, we can then import foreign administrators or politician to come and help us out

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